Congressional interest in facilitating U.S. technological innovation led to the passage of several mandates placed upon all Federal Labs collectively referred to as Technology Transfer. These provide patent rights to certain inventions arising out of Army-sponsored research and development (R&D) with the expressed purpose of encouraging the commercialization of new technologies. They also provide for cooperative research partnerships between Army labs and commercial, academic, non-profit and other partners.
Technology Transfer (T2) includes all the activities dedicated toward 1) leveraging shared research interests, capabilities, expertise with non-government entities and 2) identifying research products (inventions, innovations, knowledge) which have potential commercial interest and exploiting them. These projects may include both joint research (e.g. cooperative research and development agreements - CRADAs) and commercial exploitation (e.g. patent license agreements - PLA). T2 essentially splits the research, development costs with the commercial sector. And T2 can introduce new products and services to US markets by transferring technology to be developed, produced, manufactured, and sold by commercial partners.