Noblis Awarded Patent for a Machine Learning System That Simulates Security Checkpoints

The iterative modeling system runs many simulations and can teach itself how to optimize a checkpoint setup by finding the best way to stop threats.

RESTON, Va. — September 1, 2022 — Noblis, Inc., a leading provider of science, technology and strategy services to the federal government, today announced the award of U.S. patent 11,423,157 for a system that simulates security checkpoint environments, using machine learning to model how different security configurations will respond to a variety of threats.

“Using machine learning techniques, we’ve seen that computer systems can teach themselves rule-based adversarial games like chess,” said Stephen Melsom, Noblis engineer and co-inventor of the system. “Like chess, a security checkpoint is a battle of threat and response in which the outcome depends on the strategies the opponents choose. If an algorithm can teach itself chess, we wanted to see if we could use the same technology to learn interesting things about the adversarial environment of a security checkpoint.”

Instead of training on massive amounts of data, Noblis researchers give the system the rules of the game and ask it to play out the possible outcomes of an attacker trying to smuggle weapons or dangerous materials through a security checkpoint. “The system can identify capability gaps in each configuration of rules,” said Brian Lewis, Noblis team lead and co-inventor. “Moreover, it can calculate the return on investment of various changes to that configuration so that decision makers can use this technology as a strategic resource for allocating limited research, development and operational funding.”

“This invention came about through our Noblis Sponsored Research program, which we use to invest in the research and development of promising technologies,” said Chris Barnett, Noblis’ chief technology officer. “Because we have both the domain and technological experience related to security operations in-house, we can quickly move from idea to solution.”

Learn more about Noblis’ capabilities, our internally sponsored research and development program and other patents.

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