Battelle gets $20 million to build protection demo

Battelle Memorial Institute, Columbus, Ohio, has won a two-year, $20 million contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to demonstrate solutions for keeping buildings safe in the event of a biological or chemical attack, the company said.

The demonstration phase of the Immune Building program is the project's third phase. Battelle also participated in the first two phases.

As lead integrator, Battelle will manage the design, testing and evaluation, implementation and final demonstration of a complete building protection system.

"The innovative advancements in building protection resulting from the Immune Building program will be vital to defending Americans in the global war against terrorism," said Michael Janus, director of building protection at Battelle.

DARPA's Immune Building program began in 2001 to identify solutions for protecting building occupants, restoring operations and collecting forensic evidence in a chemical or biological event.

During the first two phases, Battelle's team identified protective technologies by modeling the effect of chemical and biological agents on different building types. The team then created a test facility at Fort McClellan, Ala.

According to Battelle officials, the team will refine and modify the test bed, then transfer the design to a facility at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. Eventually, Battelle will turn over an operational Immune Building to the Army.

Battelle's team for the demonstration phase includes Black and Veatch Inc., Mechanical Engineering and Construction Corp. and Clark Atlanta University.

With 16,000 employees, Battelle develops technology and manages laboratories for the government. The non-profit company had 2003 revenue of $1.3 billion and ranks No. 35 on Washington Technology's 2004 Top 100 list, which measures federal contracting revenue.

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