IARPA Kicks Off New Research Program to Detect Changes in Movement Patterns

IARPA Kicks Off New Research Program to Detect Changes in Movement Patterns


ODNI News Release No. 11-23

May 18, 2023


IARPA Kicks Off New Research Program to Detect Changes in Movement Patterns


WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) — the advanced research and development arm of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence — recently announced the launch of a research program to develop systems capable of modeling population movement patterns around the globe and providing alerts when concerning anomalies emerge.


The Hidden Activity Signal and Trajectory Anomaly Characterization (HAYSTAC) program aims to establish “normal” movement models across times, locations, and populations and determine what makes an activity atypical. Expansive data from the Internet of Things and Smart City infrastructures provides opportunities to build new models that understand human dynamics at unprecedented resolution and creates the responsibility to understand privacy expectations for those moving through this sensor-rich world.


“An ever-increasing amount of geospatial data is created every day,” said HAYSTAC Program Manager Dr. Jack Cooper. “With HAYSTAC, we have the opportunity to leverage machine learning and advances in artificial intelligence to understand mobility patterns with exceptional clarity. The more robustly we can model normal movements, the more sharply we can identify what is out of the ordinary and foresee a possible emergency.”


Through a competitive Broad Agency Announcement, IARPA awarded HAYSTAC research contracts to the following lead organizations, which together bring 27 additional academic institutions, non-profits, and businesses into the program:


  • Raytheon Technologies Research Center
  • L3Harris Technologies, Inc.
  • STR
  • Kitware, Inc.
  • Leidos, Inc.
  • Novateur Research Solutions
  • Deloitte Consulting LLP
  • Raytheon BBN


The HAYSTAC test and evaluation team consists of Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, MITRE, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.


IARPA invests in high-risk, high-payoff research programs to tackle some of the most difficult challenges of the agencies and disciplines in the Intelligence Community. Additional information on IARPA and its research may be found on www.iarpa.gov.