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CHIPS Articles: Innovation Road Show: Navy Seeks Acquisition Solutions from Small Businesses

Innovation Road Show: Navy Seeks Acquisition Solutions from Small Businesses
Spotlighting New England’s regional technology corridor
By Warren Duffie, Office of Naval Research - March 22, 2019
In an effort to establish new connections with innovative small businesses and research companies—and reach these players where they live and work—the U.S. Navy will host a trio of outreach events on April 8-11 in Lowell, Massachusetts.

The Navy will hold the events through its Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, both located at the Office of Naval Research. SBIR provides the Navy with groundbreaking technology created by small firms—while STTR transitions products developed by both small businesses and research institutions to the Navy and Marine Corps.

This year’s events will spotlight New England’s regional technology corridor, known for its prominent academic institutions, research centers, laboratories and science- and defense-focused companies.

“Outreach events like these help foster collaboration to enhance the innovation network and pipeline, and accelerate the delivery of needed technologies to the Navy and Marine Corps,” said SBIR Director Bob Smith. “It’s part of a new naval effort to deliver capabilities to warfighters faster by expanding relationships with regional technology hubs. This year, New England is the first stop.”

The three events are:

Partnering Summit—This is a setting where the naval acquisition community, government, industry and research organizations can meet to discuss naval priorities, share best practices and learn about partnership opportunities with SBIR and STTR. Monday, April 8, and Tuesday, April 9, at the UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center. Learn more at

Navy Forum for SBIR/STTR Transition (FST)—FST is an annual innovation marketplace matching Navy needs with small business-technology solutions. Attendees can see 133 exhibits from 107 vendors; engage in one-on-one meetings; listen to Tech Talks; and sit in on sessions hosted by congressional and Department of Defense leaders. Wednesday, April 10, and Thursday, April 11, at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell. Learn more at

Accelerated Delivery and Acquisition of Prototype Technologies (ADAPT) Workshop—ADAPT is a new approach to match non-traditional small businesses with naval needs and quick research-and-development funding. This half-day workshop will feature technology briefs on pre-released areas of interest from a Navy shipyard; discussion about the proposal process and contracting; and opportunities for face-to-face conversations with subject matter experts. Wednesday, April 10, from 8 a.m. to noon. UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center. Learn more at .

Warren Duffie Jr. is a contractor for ONR Corporate Strategic Communications

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