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NOAA awards $8 million to U.S. Small Businesses

Small Business Innovation Research Program Awards Support NOAA's Mission Priorities

NOAA awards $8 million to U.S. Small Businesses
NOAA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program recently awarded approximately $8 million in grants to 20 Phase II small business applicants. Information on the FY20 funded projects, including abstracts of successful proposals and comments on anticipated results, can be found here. Grant research topic areas included Aquaculture, Recreational and Commercial Fisheries, Weather Service Improvement and Evolution, Flood Inundation, Next-Generation Observation and Modelling Systems, and Next-Generation NOAA Platforms.

The goals of the SBIR program are to stimulate technological innovation, strengthen the role of small business in meeting federal research and development needs, encourage participation by socially and economically disadvantaged small businesses, and increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from federal research and development funding. Small businesses apply to participate in NOAA’s SBIR program during annual notices of funding opportunities. Grant proposals are reviewed by technical experts within and outside of NOAA, and are evaluated based on their scientific merit, commercialization potential, and alignment with NOAA’s mission. 

The SBIR Program has three phases. Phase I is the startup phase, during which seed money is provided for the purpose of conducting a feasibility study of an innovative technology. Small businesses use this opportunity to establish the technical merit, feasibility, and commercial potential of their proposed research. NOAA Phase I awards are funded at a maximum of $150,000 over 6 months. Phase II is an opportunity for high-performing small businesses to expand on successful Phase I results. During this time, further research and development is performed, including the development of a prototype in many cases. NOAA Phase II awards are funded at a maximum of $500,000 over 2 years. During Phase II, small businesses have the opportunity to participate in the Commercialization Assistance Program, which includes one-on-one mentorship and training that helps small businesses as they prepare to commercialize their product or service. Finally, under Phase III, the small businesses obtain funding from either the private sector, a non-SBIR Government source, or both, to develop the prototype into a viable product or service for sale in the domestic or international marketplace.

NOAA’s SBIR Program is located within the Technology Partnerships Office. To learn more about the FY20 NOAA SBIR Phase II funded projects, please visit this link. The upcoming FY22  Phase I funding opportunity will be released in October 2021. The opportunity for successful Phase I companies to apply to Phase II will immediately follow the completion of their Phase I effort. For more information on the SBIR Program and how to apply, visit our website at https://techpartnerships.noaa.gov/SBIR. You can also join our mailing list to stay connected with the NOAA SBIR program and to learn about upcoming events, workshops, requests for proposals, and other resources that we have to offer. Email NOAA.SBIR@noaa.gov with the subject “subscribe”. 
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