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article imageUS Department of Defense looking for startups to work with

By Lisa Cumming     Jun 23, 2018 in Technology
The United States Department of Defense has launched a new competition, with prize money, to "(link) innovators directly with the army to spur innovation."
The new competition, Army Expeditionary Technology Search, or xTechSearch is looking for startups to help the US Army develop new weapons tech. The US Army, who works with giant military contractors, says that this program is for "nontraditional defense partners."
This, in an effort to ensure that new technologies developed by startups are not missed out on by the US Government and to "tackle the most poignant Army modernization challenges."
"xTechSearch will highlight opportunities for nontraditional defense partners to collaborate with the Army to tackle the most poignant Army modernization challenges," says the website.
Such challenges include long range precision fires; next generation combat vehicles; future vertical lift (replacement for current aviation platforms); network with hardware, software, and infrastructure; air and missile defense and soldier lethality.
The program is looking for small business to help solve "Army challenges" with innovative technologies and ideas. Winners of the search will be provided with "cooperative research opportunities with Army labs, including access to the Army’s organic intellectual and technical capital."
To be eligible, applicants can't be a federal entity or federal employee submitting a project related to their employment, be incorporated in and have a primary place of business in the US and be eligible to work in the US.
With regards to IP, the program draft solicitation states that the federal government "may not gain an interest in IP developed by a participant without the written consent of the participant" and that the feds "may negotiate a license for the use of IP developed by a registered participant in the prize competition."
The white paper submissions are running util 12 a.m. ET on July 12, 2018 and should include both a white paper and the registration form.
Once the white paper submission deadline passes, a select group of participants will compete in a pitch session. The finalists of that round will be given a $125,000 prize, along with six months time to "demonstrate proof-of-concept for their xTechSearch technology." The winner of that round will be given an additional $200,000.
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