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Fast Capture

The Future of Fast Capture Fingerprint Devices - Taking the Next Steps

The current operational goal for fast capture fingerprint devices is to collect ten rolled-equivalent fingerprint impressions in 15 seconds or less. This operational goal originated from multiple federal agencies, primarily within the Department of Justice, who agreed to establish requirements for the Fast Capture Initiative (FCI) in 2004. Today we are asking, "Does this requirement best identify this operational need of the practitioner community, and can industry meet or exceed it?"The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), in partnership with the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), will host a workshop in the summer of 2011 intending to obtain input and analysis from practitioners, federal, private, and academic researchers, and industry on practical and realistic next steps towards the fast capture fingerprint device goal. We intend to review current research and prototypes, consider strengths and weaknesses of available prototypes and other technical approaches, and discuss potentially effective investment strategies over the next five years that best align Federal investment to achieve a robust operational capability. The efforts and results from this workshop will serve as a primary input for the development of a research and investment roadmap for NIJ, NIST, and other federal agencies for this important area. Information on the workshop will be posted on the Fast Capture Initiative website ( Questions and comments regarding this initiative can be sent to fastcap [at] (fastcap[at]nist[dot]gov).


In 2004, the FCI was launched as a collaborative effort across multiple agencies within the U.S. Department of Justice to develop prototypes capable of collecting ten rolled-equivalent fingerprint impressions in 15 seconds or less. Between 2006 and 2008, an investment of approximately $8,100,000 of R&D awards was provided to four recipients by the National Institute of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security and in collaboration with the Departments of Defense and State. This investment led to prototypes produced between 2007 and 2009 of varying degrees of operational readiness, each with particular strengths. Technological gaps remain to be overcome in order to achieve the general objective of the FCI.

Created February 23, 2011, Updated August 25, 2016