Technology Development

Small Business Innovation Research Program

SBIR STTR LogoThe purpose of DoD Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs is to harness the innovative talents of our nation’s small technology companies for U.S. military and economic strength. The program funds at over one billion dollars of projects annually and is made up of 12 participating components.

SBIRS program funds early-stage R&D at small technology companies and is designed to:

  • Stimulate technological innovation
  • Increase private sector commercialization of federal R&D
  • Increase small business participation in federally funded R&D
  • Foster participation by minority and disadvantaged firms in technological innovation

To participate in the SBIR program:

  • A firm must be a U.S. for-profit small business of 500 or fewer employees
  • Work must be performed in the United States
  • During Phase I, a minimum of 2/3 of the effort must be performed by the proposing firm; a minimum of 1/2 of the effort in Phase II
  • The Principal Investigator must spend more than 1/2 of the time employed by the proposing firm

The SBIR Program is structured in three phases:

Phase I: The objective of Phase I is to establish the technical merit, feasibility, and commercial potential of the proposed R/R&D efforts and to determine the quality of performance of the small business awardee organization prior to providing further Federal support in Phase II. SBIR Phase I awards normally do not exceed $150,000 total costs for 6 months.

Phase II: The objective of Phase II is to continue the R/R&D efforts initiated in Phase I. Funding is based on the results achieved in Phase I and the scientific and technical merit and commercial potential of the project proposed in Phase II. Only Phase I awardees are eligible for a Phase II award. SBIR Phase II awards normally do not exceed $1,000,000 total costs for 2 years.

Phase III: The objective of Phase III, where appropriate, is for the small business to pursue commercialization objectives resulting from the Phase I/II R/R&D activities. The SBIR program does not fund Phase III. Some Federal agencies, Phase III may involve follow-on non-SBIR funded R&D or production contracts for products, processes or services intended for use by the U.S. Government.

For more information on how to apply for the SBIR or STTR visit the DoD SBIR – Small Business Innovated Research website:

AcqLinks and References:

Updated: 2/17/2018

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