NASA has invested $45 million in 365 small business projects that support the areas of space science and technology, aeronautics and human exploration.
The space agency said Thursday it funds these companies with up to $125,000 each for the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer program's first phase, where they demonstrate the feasibility of proposed technologies.
“This year, to get funds into the hands of small businesses sooner, we accelerated the release of the 2021 SBIR/STTR Phase I solicitation by two months,” said Jim Reuter, associate administrator for the NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate.
Initial phase contracts under SBIR are effective for six months, as STTR contracts last for 13 months. NASA awards STTR contracts to partnerships between a small business and a research institution.
Awardees include Connecticut-based Syrnatec, which will develop radiation-tolerant diodes with the potential to enable environment-friendly high power in space.
California-based Qubitekk will work with the University of New Mexico under STTR to develop a compact hardware package for securing satellite communications.