|This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 312883|
The benefits of the HOMER project for the end user stakeholders (Police force, security, defence and the manufacturers of fertiliser and chemicals) and the European Union are:
1) Measured step towards a common HME knowledge management base for Europe’s law enforcement, security, defence and manufacturer of fertilisers and chemicals (i.e. HOMER Platform) to increase security.
2) Early engagement of end user stakeholders and transparency of basic HME knowledge, including standards to stimulate a return on security investment
3) Effective utilisation of critical research for HME knowledge to provide for a higher degree of collaboration between the end users stakeholders from their perspectives.
4) Enrichment of better knowledge of the chemicals involved in HMEs and the components and compositions.
5) Enhancement of the end user access to HME researched content, strengthening their innovation capacity while addressing issues of “Information Society for all” policies.
6) Excellent channel for rapid update to the stakeholders in relation to new HME trends and activities.
7) Interoperability opportunities, increasing collaborative advantage, potential efficiency opportunities as a result of mutual knowledge sharing between police, law enforcement professionals and centres of academic study and research.
8) Standardisation of basic vocabulary and definitions, working towards the establishment of a European Standard for HMEs.
9) Significant possibilities for increasing public confidence and increasing community confidence within the EU as a result of the ready access to an information sharing platform for law enforcement.
10) Platform to allow legislators and manufacturers of precursors to control the manufacturer and distribution of precursors to reduce the ability to manufacture HMEs.
11) The network platform can be a tool and knowledge aid to other ongoing and related research projects currently as a central point of contact for current trends and emerging threats.
12) To create a safer society for European citizens.
Given the complexity of the objectives, project activities were broken down into seven Work Packages (WPs), five of which deal with technical activities. The complete list of the HOMER project work packages is available here
BAM hosted the Techical Management Meeting and Work Package meetings in Berlin on 16th and 17th October 2015. This TMC meeting allowed the consortium to review and discuss technical matters following the Mid Term Review as well as discuss and develop technical requirements for various work packages for the remaining 18 months of the HOMER Project. The meetings included demonstrations of the HME recipes being analysed within the project as well as a tour of the labratory faciities. It also provided a useful opportunitity for interaction between the academic and technical development partners and end users to explore and refine the development of the HOMER tools.
HOMER was invited to present at the 2015 Fertilisers Europe Safety Seminar in Prague. Attended by representatives from the fertiliser industry, the PSNI presented on the work being undertaken within the HOMER project. The presentation focused on the development of a Supply Chain Security Matrix which it is envisaged could improve the security of the supply chain and distribution of fertiliser from manufacture to the field. It provided an opportunity for feedback on the proposed security matrix and generated positive discussion following the presentation. HOMER would like to thank Fertilisers Europe for the opportunity to present and for the ongoing support to the project.
The HOMER Mid Term review was held at the Office of the Northern Ireland Executive in Brussels on the 11th June 2015. It was attended by all consortium partners, the Project Officer and reviewer representing the European Commission. Each Work Package Leader presented on the progress of their Work Package over the fist 18 months of the project as well as provide a programme for the final 18 months of HOMER. Discussion also included feedback on submitted deliverables, financial management, risks and opportunities.
SEERC and CERTH kindly hosted a consortium meeting in Thessaloniki on the 12th and 13th May 2015. Attended by all partners it proved to be two productive days reviewing the progress of the project over the first 18 months and planning for the final 18 months of the project.
Work Package 6 participants met in Madrid on 12th and 13th February 2015 to discuss and further develop the work within the work package. The meeting was kindly hosted by Guardia Civil and ISDEFE and included representation from work packages 2, 3, 4 and 5. The first day focused on particular aspects of WP6 allowing the contributors to present on progress to date and open up discussion on further development of the work package, including its relationships and interdependencies with other work packages. The second day focused on the work being completed within work packages three and five, again considering how they interact with WP6. Both days proved extremely productive with a number of outcomes agreed and facilitating further development of the various work packages. This included consideration of potential additional opportunities and outcomes for HOMER.
On the 25th and 26th November 2014 the Project Management Board (PMB) met to discuss progress of the HOMER project over the first twelve months. The meeting was organised at the offices of the Northern Ireland Executive Office in Brussels. The Project Officer from the European Commission attended the meeting on the first day, which included a presentation to the consortium. Each of the project work package leaders presented on progress of their work packages allowing discussion and agreement to support the ongoing development of HOMER. The External Advisory Group also met and were able to provide useful advice to the consortium partners.
The Bulgarian Defence Institute hosted two successful days of meetings at the Lozenets Residence of the Ministry of Defence in Sofia on 30th September and 1st October 2014. This included the HOMER Technical Management Committee meeting as well as a project meeting. The meetings allowed project partners to present on progress of the work packages and facilitated discussion on the future development of HOMER.
Both days were extremely productive and also included the consortium visiting the Bulgarian National Military Museum.
The Bulgarian Defence Institute (BDI) hosted a bilateral meeting between CERTH and BDI representatives in Sofia, Bulgaria on the 4th July 2014. The goal was to strengthen the collaboration between the two partners and to discuss several issues pertaining to Work Package 3 that regards the HME Internet Information Collection. Particular emphasis was placed on the empirical study of Web nodes containing HME recipes; this study applies the empirical cycle methodology with the aim to analyse the kinds of Web nodes that typically include such information and how this is encoded. The bilateral meeting was very productive and gave the way forward for the work on WP3.
The Bulgarian Defence Institute hosted a productive and successful Work Package 6 meeting in Sofia on 2nd and 3rd July 2014. The meeting was attended by a number of consortium partners and included specific input from the end users. It allowed those involved with Work Package 6 to develop and agree a clear path for the delivery of this work package, whilst also considering the independence with other work packages. The event included a 'Traditional' Bulgarian meal for the consortium on the first evening which was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended.
Trinity College Dublin hosted the first Project Management Board and Technical Management Committee meetings in Dublin on 29th and 30th April 2014. The event was attended by 29 representatives from the consortium and advisory groups, over the two days.
The consortium reviewed progress since the Kick-off meeting as well as discuss the development of HOMER moving forward. An evening meal was organised on the first evening which allowed the consortium members to further build and strengthen relationships as well as providing an informal environment to discuss work within the project.
Trinity College kindly organised a tour to view the 'Book of Kells' and visit the historic Long Room (library) within the University. Overall the two days proved extremely productive allowing the consortium to agree and shape the direction of HOMER.
The first meeting of representatives from the consortium partners participating in the HOMER project was held in Belfast on the 27th & 28th November 2013.
The project which is led by the Police Service of Northern Ireland, will co-ordinate research and learning in relation to Homemade Explosives (HMEs), Recipes and Characteristics (HOMER) and develop a knowledge sharing platform for law enforcement agencies, military and defence agencies, and for manufacturers of fertilisers and chemicals.
Approximately 20 representatives took part in the two-day discussions that saw the work of the project start in earnest.
Welcoming partners, Assistant Chief Constable Drew Harris, who is the PSNI EU Projects Strategic Lead, said: “In previous EU FP7 Projects, the PSNI has been an end user or a collaborative partner, bringing frontline knowledge and experience to security research projects in consortia across Europe. For the first time, the PSNI as an end user will also lead a consortium. We are very proud of this achievement. It has taken a great deal of effort and we hope that it will deliver positive outcomes and that success in this project will mean a safer, more secure Europe.”
The ten partners in the project are based throughout Europe and provide a range of expertise and specialism’s to support the delivery of project objectives.