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NASA fosters innovative technology concepts from small businesses

NASA fosters innovative technology concepts from small businesses


Credit: NASA

New space technology ideas are born every day from innovators across the country, and NASA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program on Monday selected more than 100 projects for funding. The program provides early-stage funding and support to small and medium-sized businesses in the United States, furthering the agency's goal of exploring the unknown worlds of sky and space while giving back to the planet.

Specifically, NASA's SBIR program awarded $93.5 million in Phase II contracts to implement 107 new ideas from 95 selected small businesses. Of these companies, approximately 80% have fewer than 50 employees, and 21% received initial Phase II awards worth up to $850,000 each. Each small business was also eligible to apply for up to $50,000 in technology and business assistance program funding to help identify new market opportunities and shape a commercialization roadmap.

“We support this diverse group of companies working hard to bring their technologies to market,” said Jen Gustich, director of early stage innovation and partnerships at NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) in Washington. I'm excited to be able to do it.” “Inclusive innovation is essential to mission success at NASA, and we are pleased that 29% of his award recipients are from underrepresented groups, including women-owned businesses.”

In Phase II, awardees will build on the successes of the program's first phase and move their technology closer to real-world use. The companies have 24 months to implement a plan focused on the path to commercialization of their technology.

For example, NASA selected nou Systems, Inc., a woman-owned company in Huntsville, Alabama, and the first NASA Phase II awardee, for its genetic testing equipment. Portable genetic sequencing already exists, but field sequencing, which allows DNA analysis anywhere on Earth or off-planet, remains unfeasible. DNA library preparation remains a highly manual process, requiring trained wet lab technicians and some laboratory equipment. Phase II technology utilizes several cross-enabling technologies to create a means to automate the gene sequencing process.

“Our program works directly with small businesses to impact NASA projects and countless commercial initiatives,” said Jason L. Kessler, program executive for NASA's SBIR and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. We are building innovative concepts and technologies that will give you the best possible results.” At NASA headquarters. “This collaboration results in opportunities not only for NASA but for all of humanity.”

This includes technologies aimed at reducing astronaut workloads and improving robotic science efforts on the Moon and Mars. Boulder, Colorado-based PickNik Inc. will use its Phase II award to help humans command remote robots to complete complex tasks with minimal input, potentially supporting the Artemis program. We plan to continue developing a hardware-independent platform for supervised autonomy. Beyond NASA, PickNik's software products are also of interest to commercial space customers working in areas such as terrestrial warehouse management, oil rig maintenance, and deep-sea exploration, as well as low-Earth orbit destinations and space services. There is a possibility that it will be. .

The NASA SBIR program is open to small and medium-sized businesses in the United States to develop innovation and technology. The program is part of his STMD and is managed by NASA's Ames Research Center in California's Silicon Valley.

/Open to the public. This material from the original organization/author may be of a contemporary nature and has been edited for clarity, style, and length. Mirage.News does not take any institutional stance or position, and all views, positions, and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the authors. Read the full text here.




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