WASHINGTON – While the U.S. Army already implements stringent safety measures for training, serious risks remain when teaching combat divers in unforgiving underwater environments.
To address these risks, the Army Applied Small Business Innovation Research Program and Army Applications Laboratory co-funded 10 small business contracts to deliver training technology that could revolutionize commercial wearables and smartwatches through underwater capabilities.
Each small business received a Phase I SBIR contract of up to $150,000 to develop waterproof physiological monitoring systems. With the funding, the companies will look for ways to better track a Soldier’s well-being throughout the Combat Diver Qualification Course — as opposed to relying on visual signs of distress.
To deliver these lifesaving capabilities across the services, the Army Applied SBIR Program shaped this opportunity in collaboration with the Army Applications Laboratory and its work with the U.S. Special Operations Command.
“The safety and performance of our Soldiers in underwater operational environments were at the forefront of this effort,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Director of the Army Prize Competitions and the Army Applied SBIR Program. “With the help of these small businesses, we can address Soldiers’ needs while also potentially expanding the use case across several commercial athletic programs and markets.”
Diver-Performance Monitoring System Awardees:
· Luna Labs USA, LLC, Charlottesville, Va.
· Altec Inc., Frederick, Md.
· Creare LLC, Hanover, N.H.
· Cornerstone Research Group, Miamisburg, Ohio
· PinMed, Inc., Pittsburgh, Pa.
· Asymmetric Technologies LLC, Dublin, Ohio
· Aptima, Inc., Arlington, Va.
· Flipper Inc., Albany, Calif.
· Human Systems Integration, Walpole, Mass.
· Critical Innovations LLC, Lawndale, Calif.
The Army Applied SBIR Program offers Phase I contracts to small businesses and nontraditional vendors with technologies that show technical merit, feasibility and commercial potential. It also provides funding to businesses capable of helping the Army achieve its goals and earn further federal support in Phase II. The Direct to Phase II award is for already-mature solutions ready for demonstration.
Through the Army Applied SBIR Program, companies engage with technical, acquisition and operational subject matter experts. These specialists offer insight into the Army’s technological opportunities while guiding them through the Army research and development ecosystem.
The Army Applied SBIR Program releases contract opportunities on a rolling, ad-hoc basis to respond to the Army’s current and expected warfighting technology needs. For eligibility information and a list of open solicitations, please visit the Army SBIR|STTR website.
The Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology provides the American Soldier with a decisive advantage in any mission by developing, acquiring, fielding and sustaining the world’s finest equipment and services. It also leverages technologies and capabilities to meet current and future Army needs. For more information, please visit the Army ASA(ALT) website.