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NOAA Picks 21 Small Businesses for Phase I SBIR Grants; Neil Jacobs Quoted

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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has allocated $3.1 million to support 21 small businesses in developing technologies under subject areas such as earth and ocean observation, aquaculture, weather prediction, fisheries and modeling.

NOAA said Friday the awardees represent 14 states and will receive $150K each in Phase I funding to conduct research and development activities throughout a six-month period.

The companies may compete for up to $500,000 in Phase II funds to further their respective concepts. Phase III participants are allowed to request for additional funds outside NOAA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to drive commercialization of the resulting technologies.

Kelly Wright, director of NOAA's Technology Partnerships Office, said the awardees bring significant expertise in areas such as artificial intelligence, machine learning and unmanned systems.

“Through collaboration with these small businesses, Americans will benefit with increased forecast accuracy and better management of our natural resources,” said Neil Jacobs, acting administrator of NOAA.

The agency began accepting applications for SBIR Phase I funding in December.

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