Assuring Quality Sentry-SECURE Deployments Amid COVID-19

Nina Lopez - Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Brandon Gorton - PNNL
Eric Gonzalez - BATTELLE
Bryan Avery - Pacific Northwest Laboratory
Jaime Wise - Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

The Sentry-RMS Communications and Response Platform (Sentry-SECURE) includes a mobile application designed to increase situational awareness for law enforcement stakeholders. Sentry-SECURE is a feature of the Sentry-Remote Monitoring System (Sentry-RMS), a standalone security system used to alert stakeholders critical to assuring the safekeeping of radioactive materials.  Its design intent is to mitigate the risk of the insider threats at universities and hospitals where radioactive sources are necessary to conduct research and to perform medical therapies. Both Sentry-RMS and Sentry-SECURE are projects funded by the Department of Energy’s Office of Radiological Security (ORS). Developing and deploying Sentry-SECURE during the COVID-19 pandemic was challenging. Prior to the pandemic, the ORS Sentry-SECURE team travelled to user facilities and their associated law enforcement agencies to build rapport with end users, better prescribe technical requirements, and gain knowledge on consumer pain points. Team members that were conditioned to traveling frequently to consumer sites were now tasked with finding new, innovative ways to meet project objectives. This included incentivizing the team to learn how to meet stakeholder needs while promoting effective and lasting professional relationships in a virtual landscape. This paper will identify the steps during the deployment process where virtual engagement found success and those steps that would present significant challenges if held over only virtual communications. The team adapted to a new deployment model and identified processes to assure implementation and deployments continue to be successful.