USPS re-ups Lockheed Martin for address recognition work

Lockheed Martin Corp. won a contract worth up to $120 million to continue improving the U.S. Postal Service's automated systems for recognizing handwritten and machine-printed addresses on letter mail.

The Bethesda, Md., company will upgrade the Postal Service's Remote Computer Reader system which it has deployed at 350 mail processing and distribution centers.

The upgrades provided by the company and its suppliers will let the Postal Service automatically process more letter-mail-to-address read rates above the current 92 percent, Lockheed Martin said.

Lockheed Martin plans to increase read rates by enhancing recognition algorithms, evaluating new algorithms from other sources for integration into the system and using new directory databases to improve address recognition results. The company also will develop, integrate and test the computer hardware and software needed for improving read rates, as well as train staff at the Postal Service's processing and distribution centers.

Lockheed Martin has worked for 10 years on Remote Computer Reader-related programs for the Postal Service. During that time, the automated system has substantially reduced costs for the Postal Service and allowed for more efficient deliveries, said Brian Tanton, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin's distribution technologies business.

The company employs 135,000 people worldwide and had 2004 revenue of $35.5 billion. It ranks No. 1 on Washington Technology's 2005 Top 100 list of prime federal contractors.

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