DOD Taps ODIN, Unisys For Services

The two systems integrators will provide services to the United States military under a blanket purchase agreement.
Published: July 18, 2005

Systems integrator Unisys has been awarded a U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) blanket purchase agreement (BPA) under which all military services can use the companies to evaluate, install and integrate radio frequency identification systems. The company will work with ODIN Technologies, which will serve as a subcontractor.

This makes the two companies, working together, approved service providers for the military. There is no limit on the value for the contract.

ODIN’s Patrick Sweeney

The agreement covers “technical engineering services” for passive RFID systems. Unisys has run the U.S. military’s global network for tracking goods with active RFID tags. ODIN specializes in analyzing and installing passive technology.

The agreement is nonexclusive. The DOD will likely approve other systems integrators to provide services. The Unisys BPA covers the testing of RFID tags and readers (interrogators), the deployment of readers and the integration of RFID data with middleware and back-end software systems.

“Our vision is that we’ll have the tags and readers to choose from that [have] been approved by the DOD under other BPAs,” says ODIN president and CEO Patrick Sweeney. “We expect the various military services will turn to [ODIN and Unisys] for insight about which hardware best meets their needs, and then ask us to deploy it for them.”

Sweeney says ODIN will handle the installation of passive systems, while Unisys will provide network integration and support. He said the two companies are prepared to provide services even in Iraq.

In May, the military awarded BPA agreements to several companies to provide RFID interrogators, antennas and supporting equipment and software from ADT Security Services, Symbol Technologies, AWID, Alien Technology and SAMSys Technologies (see DOD Awards Reader Purchase Agreements).

In March, BPAs for tag purchasing were announced (see DOD Awards Contracts for EPC Tags). Two more groups of RFID contracts are expected this year. The remaining groups will cover RFID printers, as well as portable and handheld RFID readers.