Homeland Security’s Science & Tech Directorate Joins AWARN Advisory Committee

WASHINGTON—The latest public safety organization to join the Advanced Warning and Response Network (AWARN) Advisory Committee it the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate. AWARN, which is based on ATSC 3.0, is designed to provide new capabilities for disaster warning and recovery information for the American public.

The AWARN Advisory Committee provides technical and operational input to the AWARN Alliance, a cross-industry coalition that is developing the new alerting system. Homeland Security joins the FEMA, the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children, the National Weather Service and the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials, all of which joined the Advisory Committee last summer.

The AWARN Alliance, using ATSC 3.0, is working on a system that can deliver geo-targeted, rich-media emergency messages to enabled consumer devices, including 4K UHD TVs, tablets, smartphones and connected cars.

DHS S&T conducts basic and applied research, development, demonstration, testing and evaluation activities, which John Lawson, executive director of the AWARN Alliance, said will be used to support research into the social science of alerting and human response to help develop AWARN.

The AWARN Alliance is expected to begin developing an end-to-end AWARN technical solution in 2018, with input from the Advisory Committee. The stated goal is to have a beta version of AWARN alerting available for early adopter television stations that launch Next Gen TV transmission in 2019.

For a comprehensive list of TV Technology’s ATSC 3.0 coverage, see our ATSC3 silo.