Technology Development is the application of scientific methods to achieve a Department of Defense (DoD), commercial or industrial technology objectives. In the Acquisition Process, the Technology Maturation & Risk Reduction (TMRR) Phase develops and demonstrates prototype designs to reduce technical risk, validate designs, validate cost estimates, evaluate manufacturing processes, and refine requirements.
Definition: Technology development refers to the systematic process of advancing and improving existing technologies or creating entirely new ones through research, experimentation, and innovation. It involves activities aimed at enhancing the capabilities, functionalities, efficiency, and reliability of technological systems, components, or processes. Technology development encompasses various stages, such as concept design, prototyping, testing, refining, and scaling up for practical applications. It often involves interdisciplinary collaboration, including engineers, scientists, researchers, and designers, who work together to push the boundaries of knowledge and create solutions that address specific needs or challenges. Technology development plays a crucial role in driving progress, driving industries forward, and fostering innovation in various sectors.
Technology Maturation & Risk Reduction (TMRR) Phase Activities
There are several technology initiatives that take place during the TMRR phase or independently from an acquisition program. These initiatives focus on developing technology from the concept phase into mature technology. The process usually starts with a concept demonstration and is the matured technology development process such as prototyping. There are a number of technology development programs within the DoD that include:
- Advanced Technology Demonstration (ATD): Demonstrates the maturity and potential of advanced technologies for enhanced military operational capability or cost-effectiveness.
- Advanced Technology Development: is a funded effort to develop technology for incorporation into system prototypes for field experiments and/or tests in a simulated environment.
- Independent Research & Development (IR&D): Technical research and development effort by an industry that is not sponsored by, or required in the performance of, a contract and that consists of projects lacking within the areas of basic and applied research and development, and other concept formulation studies.
Technology Development Initiatives
A couple of initiatives are in place for small businesses to help them with technology development. These programs are meant to harness the innovative talents of our nation’s small technology companies for U.S. military and economic strength. These initiatives include:
Topics related to the actual process of technology development include:
- Technology Development Strategy (TDS)
- Technology Readiness Levels (TRL)
- Technology Readiness Assessment
- Technology Release Roadmap
- Technology Broad Agency Announcement (BAA)
- Joint Capability Technology Demonstration (JCTD)
AcqLinks and References:
- Defense Acquisition Guidebook (DAG)
- Technology Readiness Assessment Deskbook – Appendix C
- Open Technology Development (OTD): Lessons Learned & Best Practices for Military Software, 16 May 2011
- DoD SBIR/STTR Program Flyer
- TRL Cheat Sheet
- White Paper: FAR 31.205-18, R&D and B&P Cost by Karen L. Manos
- Website: Defense Innovation Marketplace
- Website: US Gov. Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)
- Website: US Gov. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)