The Next Generation First Responder (NGFR) Apex Program works with first responders across the country to ensure the technology they use while responding to an emergency keeps them better protected, connected and fully aware.
Participate in our current projects
- Integration Demonstrations
Through Integration Demonstrations, we have integrated DHS-developed technology with technologies that are commercially available for first responders, creating a standards-based “plug‑and‑play” environment.
- Next Generation First Responder Integration Handbook
We have collaborated with first responders, public safety agencies and industry to provide recommendations on the design and development of interoperable first responder technologies.
Contact us at NGFR@hq.dhs.gov.
The Next Generation First Responder (NGFR) Apex Program is a five-year program that began in January 2015 but is part of a longer-term Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) commitment to envision and assist the responder of the future. NGFR continually collaborates with first responders across the nation on various projects -- from developing program requirements to testing prototypes of technology. These cutting-edge technologies will improve emergency response time and accelerate decision-making to save more lives.
NGFR is comprised of more than 40 research and development projects geared towards making responders better protected, connected and fully aware. NGFR will incrementally deliver these capabilities over the program cycle and will continue to partner with first responders to test and evaluate technologies before they are available on the market.
- Snapshot: VitalTag Delivers Faster Response Time for Paramedics
When mass casualty incidents occur — shootings, earthquakes, multiple-car pile-ups — first responders can easily be overwhelmed by the sheer number of victims. When every second counts, monitoring the vital signs of all the victims in a chaotic situation can be difficult. Emergency medical technicians and paramedics need a way to easily monitor multiple patients on scene, receive notifications when vital signs change for the worse, and share that information with everyone who needs it.
- Snapshot: Public Safety Agencies Pilot Artificial Intelligence to Aid in First Response
Imagine a first responder answering the call to a natural disaster, a house fire, or an active shooter incident where there may be multiple injuries and unknown casualties. The information the responder needs to fulfill the mission is immeasurable.
- S&T Helps First Responders Mitigate Potential Jamming
When someone’s life is on the line, clear, fast, and accurate communication is vital to ensure first responders can provide the help Americans everywhere depend on.
- DHS S&T Awards Metronome Software $750K to Strengthen Security of First Responder Sensor Systems
Metronome Software is developing a technology solution that will significantly enhance the security of mobile device-based sensor systems used by first responders with funding provided by the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate.
Fact Sheets and Videos
NGFR Fact Sheets
- 2016 First Responder Electronic Jamming Exercise Fact Sheet
- 2017 First Responder Electronic Jamming Exercise Fact Sheet
- 2018 NGFR – Harris County Operational Experimentation Fact Sheet
- Assistant for Understanding Data through Reasoning, Extraction and Synthesis (AUDREY) Fact Sheet
- Mobile Ad-hoc Networking (MANET) to Improve Public Safety Situational Awareness Fact Sheet
- Next Generation First Responder Communication Hub Fact Sheet
- Next Generation First Responder Fact Sheet
- Next Generation First Responder Integration Demo Fact Sheet
- Next Generation First Responder Internet of Things (IoT) Pilot Phase 1 Fact Sheet
- Next Generation First Responder Technology Integration Handbook Fact Sheet
- Physiological Monitoring Fact Sheet
- Wearable Alert and Monitoring Systems (WAMS) Fact Sheet
NGFR Integration Handbook Video
S&T is developing equipment and systems for the first responder of the future. The Next Generation First Responder (NGFR) Handbook shows industry how to conform their ideas and products to the responder environment. It is a guide to doing business with S&T.
Next Generation First Responder II
When a bomb explodes in a public building, local enforcement, fire service and emergency medical personnel respond using communications technologies envisioned by S&T’s Next Generation First Responder program. The video demonstrates how these technologies will enable responders to better coordinate their efforts to save lives during critical incidents.
2016 First Responder Electronic Jamming Exercise
In July 2016, S&T assembled first responders and communications technicians from across the country to explore the effects of radio frequency interference on emergency communications. The exercise at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico gave participants firsthand experience dealing with intentional interference (jamming) in operational situations and spurred discussions of how to counter it through improved communications procedures.
Next Generation First Responder
Next Generation First Responder (NGFR) Apex program will integrate multi-threat personal protective equipment, plug-and-play sensors and advanced communications devices to provide multi-layer threat protection and immediate situational awareness to first responders. Future innovations include embedded wearable sensor technology, mobile computing, advanced visualization and real-time network data exchange.
Future of First Response: System Summary
Law enforcement, firefighters and emergency medical technicians are facing challenges today that no one envisioned fifteen years ago. DHS S&T’s Next Generation First Responder program Responder Technology Alliance is working to anticipate responder needs five, 10, even 15 years from now and develop integrated solutions. This video highlights future tech and how it will all work together to make responders better protected, connected and fully aware.
Future of First Response: Vision for Emergency Medical Services
DHS S&T shows a glimpse of some of potential future technologies, like a light breathable layer to protect from gunshots that will help the emergency medical technician of the future.
Future of First Response: Vision for Firefighting
DHS S&T shows a glimpse of some of potential future technologies, like lighter turnout gear that protects from toxins as well as heat, and integrated communications and safety devices that will help the firefighter of the future be better protected, connected and fully aware.
Future of First Response: Vision for Police
DHS S&T shows a glimpse of some of potential future technologies, like sensors that monitor health status and location, and augmented reality glasses that will help the law enforcement officer of the future.
- Electronic Jamming Infographic
- Grant County – DHS Science and Technology Directorate Next Generation First Responder Apex Program Technology Experiment (TechEx) After Action Report
- Next Generation First Responder - Making Responders Better Protected, Connected and Fully Aware
- Next Generation First Responder Case Study: Deployable Communications
- Next Generation First Responder Case Study: Location Services
- Next Generation First Responder Case Study: Situational Awareness
- Next Generation First Responder Case Study: Physiological Monitoring
- Next Generation First Responder Case Study: Video Services
- Next Generation First Responder Infographic
- NGFR Integration Handbook
- Project Responder 5
For other S&T publications, visit the First Responder Publications page.