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NASA Picks Small Business Tech Proposals for Development

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NASA Picks Small Business Tech Proposals for Development

WASHINGTON, March 7, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA has selected

108 research and technology proposals from U.S. small businesses that

will enable NASA's future missions while benefiting America's new high

technology-driven economy right here on Earth.

The selected proposals now will enter into negotiations for contract

awards as part of Phase II of the agency's Small Business Innovation

Research (SBIR) Program. The selected aerospace technology and

innovation projects have a total value of approximately $87 million,

supporting 99 U.S. firms in 26 states.

"NASA's future successes depends on the innovative capacity of

American small businesses, and their ability to bring new technology

to bear on the problems NASA tackles," said Michael Gazarik, associate

administrator for space technology at NASA Headquarters in Washington.

"We see the benefits of small businesses and their SBIR-funded

technology working for us every day, whether here on Earth in our air

traffic control systems, or on the surface of Mars and the technology

behind NASA's Mars Curiosity rover. Small businesses are bringing

innovation to the marketplace while creating new products, new jobs,

and strengthening our economy."

Under the general element, NASA chose 98 proposals worth approximately

$73.5 million. Under the select element, NASA chose 10 proposals worth

approximately $13.5 million.

NASA's SBIR Program is a competitive awards-based program that

encourages U.S. small businesses to engage in federal research,

development and commercialization. The program also enables businesses

to explore technological potential, while providing the incentive to

profit from new commercial products and services. Small businesses

create about two out of every three jobs in the U.S. each year, and

roughly half of working Americans either own or work for a small


Innovative research areas among these selected proposals address the

challenges NASA is facing as the agency continues to pursue exciting

missions of exploration and discovery.

Selected proposals from these small businesses will develop efficient

energy and power systems for human and robotic spacecraft; new

concepts for in-space propulsion; advanced telescope technologies to

enable a new class of critical observatories; next generation sensors

for the study of Earth; and robotic technologies for the exploration

of other planets.

Small businesses working under NASA's SBIR program are also developing

new technology to monitor astronaut health, and creating new materials

and the manufacturing processes that support them. Additional work

includes building new simulation environments to reduce the cost and

complexity of future space missions.

This year's NASA SBIR Phase II selections support two program

elements: a general element sought proposals in response to a broad

range of research and technology topics, while a second select element

focused on a small group of topics of particular interest to NASA.

NASA SBIR Phase II projects in both program elements will expand on

the results of recently completed Phase I projects. Phase I projects

were six-month contracts ranging from $125,000 to $225,000. Phase II

projects last no more than two years. Funding for contracts chosen

under the general element may be up to $750,000 per award. Awards

under the select element may be up to $1.5 million per award. Phase

III, or the commercialization of an innovation, may occur after

successful completion of Phase II.

Selection criteria for selection of these awards included technical

merit and feasibility, along with experience, qualifications and

facilities. Additional criteria included effectiveness of the work

plan and commercial potential and feasibility.

NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif., manages the SBIR

program for NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate. NASA's 10

centers manage individual projects. For more information about NASA's

SBIR program and a list of selected companies, visit:

NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate is innovating, developing,

testing and flying hardware for use in NASA's future missions. For

more information about NASA's investment in space technology, visit:

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