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FISCAN: Security Inspection Systems

FISCAN is one of the most influential security inspection equipment and system manufacturers in the world, which provides series of X-ray/Gamma ray scanners and a software product line of security inspection systems deployed in misson-critical domains. Multi-Tier Management Security Inspection System (MTMSIS) product line provides various applications ranging from systems for  total security solutions at airports to systems used at seaports, customs and other transportation areas.

FISCAN began to develop its first check-in baggage security inspecition system in early 1993 and achieved great business success after its first release in early 1996. However, challenges appeared when FISCAN won two contracts from two airports almost simultaneously in early 1998. The needed systems would be larger, more robust and complicated. Some key requirements were different, although most of them were still the same. A new approach was considered to overcome these difficutlies: Human resources and time were limited, quality was hard to control with two object systems, maintaining two systems in the future was unimaginable. Thus FISCAN formed an initiative to introduce the development methods of SPLE.

The initiative began with work to eliminate fatal variabilities based on feature and commonality/variability analsyis, and followed with designing the reference architechure, developing and organizing the source code in a more reusable manner, introducing parameters, defining components and constructing an initial core asset base. From then on, FISCAN kept adding value through SPLE practice in economic, technical and organizational aspects during the evolution of its security inspection systems SPL.

FISCAN identified best practice and lessons based on its experience for summary, training, communication and persistence in pursuing new achievements of SPLE. FISCAN have reached a high level of reusing human resources and greatly reduce development labor cost. A family architecture of FISCAN security inspection systems based on a subdomain-based SPL structure and other valuable works, such as process model, Robust-Reference-Architecture-Centric (RRA-Centric) approach, Max-Com & Min-Var, 3-Stage Market Model, framework of SPL-to-srSOS and system of systems, provide cornerstones for farther practice of SPLE and more success of FISCAN security inspection systems.


Dong Li and Ye Yang, “Enhance Value by Building Trustworthy Software-Reliant System of Systems from Software Product Lines,” Proceedings of the 3rd International Workshop on Product Line Approaches in Software Engineering (PLEASE 2012), in conjunction with the 34rd International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE 2012), June 2-9, 2012, pp. 13-16.

Dong Li and David M. Weiss, “Adding Value through Software Product Line Engineering: The Evolution of the FISCAN Software Product Lines,” Proceedings of the 15th International Software Product Line Conference (SPLC 2011), August 21-26, 2011, pp. 213-222.

Dong Li, “Identifying Best Practice by Analyzing the Evolution of the FISCAN MTMSIS Software Product Line,” Proceedings of the 2nd annual Product Line Approaches in Software Engineering workshop (PLEASE 2011), in conjunction with the 33rd International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE 2011), May 22-23, 2011, pp. 35-39.

Dong Li, “A Robust-Reference-Architecture-Centric Approach for High Availability SPLE in Security Inspection Domain,” Proceedings of the 14th International Software Product Line Conference (SPLC 2010), September 2010, pp. 259-262.

Dong Li and Carl K. Chang, “Initiating and Institutionalizing Software Product Line Engineering: from Bottom-up Approach to To-down Practice,” Proceedings of the 33rd IEEE International Computer Software and Applications Conference (COMPSAC 2009), July 2009, pp.53-60.

Dong Li and Huimin Chen, “Review of Security Inspection Networking System Development in China Airports and Its Trend in the Future,” Proceedings of the IEEE 39th Annual 2005 International Carnahan Conference on Security Technology(Carnahan 2005), October 2005, pp. 178-181.

About This Product Line

FISCAN is a prominent pioneer of X-ray security inspection systems in China.

FISCAN was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2011.