Litton/PRC chosen for imaging contract

The Federal Aviation Administration looking to do its part in U.S. drug interdiction programs has selected Litton/PRC Inc. to build a document management and imaging system to handle more than 1 million aircraft and pilot registration documents.

The Electronic Document Management System (EDMS) contract will be worth $8 million in the base year but should be worth $20 million or more during its eight-year life cycle according to Federal Sources Inc. McLean Va.

EDMS part of the FAA's Airmen and Aircraft Registry Modernization Program will streamline access to various documents - such as pilot licenses aircraft ownership titles and change of ownership documents - that currently are stored on microfiche and microfilm.

The new system will help the FAA meet a 1988 congressional mandate to provide the law enforcement community with timely access to aircraft and pilot information to fight drug trafficking. The mandate also required the FAA to renew pilot certificates and aircraft registrations which will create another opportunity for the FAA to verify licenses but will also create more work.

"All of these things added together put such a tremendous requirement on us the only way we could handle it was to automate what we were doing " said Steve Walker the FAA's EDMS program manager in Oklahoma City. The FAA expects to have the new system in place in about one year Walker said.

EDMS will put hundreds of workstations into the field. PRC's EDMS solution will be based upon a network of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows NT servers Windows 95 workstations and optical storage drives.

EDMS also requires high-speed scanners and data communications hardware and software.

EDMS is different from other imaging and document management solutions primarily because of its complexity said Tom McKeown manager of business development in PRC's systems integration division. "We have so many components and a large number of users."

For example the million-plus files the FAA eventually expects to store will add up to as many as 180 million images and require 32 terabytes of storage. The program initially calls for a capability to handle 20T of storage.

PRC's teammates on EDMS include Electronic Data Systems Corp. and Unisys.


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