Advancing the Transportation-Security, Tracking and Reporting System (T-STAR)

James R. Younkin - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Michael Schultze - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Lloyd Clonts - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Shane Frank - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Brad Stinson - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Bogdan Vacaliuc - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
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The Transportation–Security, Tracking and Reporting System (T-STAR) was developed by the National NuclearSecurity Administration, NA-21, Office of Radiological Security (ORS) to provide a transportation security systemfor detection and tracking during transport of Category 1 and Category 2 radiological material. While many off-the-shelf systems provide asset tracking of the conveyance, few offer detection of a breach into the cargo compartmentor the removal of cargo from the conveyance. Systems that do offer this capability need to be permanently installedon the conveyance, requiring drilling holes and running cables through the conveyance itself. This means thatdedicated shipping containers or vehicles are required, which is not sustainable in many countries where ORS isbuilding capacity for the security of radioactive materials in use, storage, and transport. ORS has built two iterationsof T-STAR, “Gen 1” and “Gen 2,” and the lessons learned from the development and deployment of those systemsare being used in the development of the new “Gen 3” system. Gen 3 of T-STAR is leveraging various Oak RidgeNational Laboratory technologies to improve the communications capability and reduce power requirements,including the multimode communications module developed by the Unmanned Aerial Systems Research Centerand the low power and extensible Authenticatable Container Tracking System (ACTS) tag developed for the USDepartment of Energy’s Packaging Certification Program. T-STAR uses a cell phone and an Iridium modem tocommunicate the configuration and alert a server monitoring the shipment, incorporates a wireless security systemallowing various instrusion detection sensors to be located in the conveyence, a harware security module for digitallysigning communications messages and various built-in environmental sensors. This paper will detail theoverarching T-STAR capabilites, architecture, and components, as well as provide insights on deployment.