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    USAF accelerates funding program for university entrepreneurs



    Story by Staff Sgt. Jordyn Fetter 


    The U.S. Air Force is working to fundamentally change the fabric of university entrepreneurship in America by making the service a partner of choice through the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program.

    The Air Force Research Laboratory and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research debuted a revised and accelerated version of the program April 19 in partnership with AFWERX and the Department of Defense Small Business Innovation Research(SBIR)/STTR Office.

    “Academia produces disruptive science and technology innovations at an increasingly rapid pace,” said Lt. Col. Randy “Laz” Gordon, STTR capability lead for AFWERX. “We realized we have to meet them at the speed they’re going in order to harness the power of their ideas and tech for use within the Air Force.”

    Under the revised and accelerated STTR program, the Air Force is hosting an open call for ideas and technologies that may not be currently listed under other, more specific STTR topics, but still fit within AFOSR’s broad interest.

    The program will solicit solutions from areas including engineering and complex systems, information and networks, physical sciences, and chemistry and biological sciences.

    In addition to hosting open topics as opposed to more specific problem sets, the revamped version of the program is increasing the amount of money being awarded in each phase from $15 thousand to $25 thousand in Phase I, and $100 thousand to $200 thousand in Phase II.

    In Phase I, applicants will be asked to submit a proposal detailing their technology idea. If selected, they will have a period of performance of approximately three months to undergo Air Force customer discovery and technology development. Phase I will conclude with a progress brief to AFOSR personnel.

    Successful proposals from Phase I will then have the opportunity to immediately compete for Phase II awards leading to minimum viable prototype development and experimentation with the Air Force.

    To be eligible, individuals or teams must belong to a university--either as an undergraduate, a graduate, a doctorate,a post-doctorate, or faculty and staff--must have formed a company, and also have partnered with a university or non-profit organization that can help turn their prototype or technology into a business.

    Due to the rapidly emerging nature and increasing impact to all science and technology, this open topic also includes a special emphasis area of consideration for quantum science and artificial intelligence technology. The Air Force hopes to drive development in both areas to accelerate application to real world challenges.

    The application submission window opens on May 31 and applications close on July 1 at 8 p.m. EST.

    Learn more about the program and how to apply here: https://www.afwerx.af.mil/sttr.html



    Date Taken: 04.19.2019
    Date Posted: 06.06.2019 14:38
    Story ID: 325802
    Location: ARLINGTON, VA, US 

    Web Views: 108
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    USAF accelerates funding program for university entrepreneurs