NASA recently awarded 17 small companies more than $14 million to keep developing promising new technologies. They’re already shown promising results in the first round of funding. With the latest on NASA’s and Small Business Technology Transfer and Small Business Innovation Research programs, Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the acting program executive Gynelle Steele.
Tom Temin: Ms. Steele, good to have you on.
Gynelle Steele: Thanks for having me, Tom.
Tom Temin: So this is a long standing program, it’s really two programs that are interrelated. Just give us the architecture of the program and a little bit of the history.
Gynelle Steele: Absolutely. So STTR stands for Small Business Technology Transfer program. And we support and fund American small businesses in partnership with research institutes, that have a desire to further relevant research and build capacity for NASA, the commercial aerospace industry in the nation as a whole. The program is run jointly with this sister program, the NASA Small Business Innovation Research Program, or SBIR. But the main difference between the two is that STTR requires a small business to partner with a research institute. Whereas the SBIR program is open to just any small business, no partnership is required. Our program’s goal is to introduce new technologies and ideas when and where they are needed most. So we fund