The DHS S&T SBIR Program was initiated in 2004 with the goal of increasing the participation of innovative and creative U.S. small businesses in federal research and development programs and challenging industry to bring innovative homeland security solutions to reality.
Solicitation topics are developed by Program Managers in each of the Science and Technology (S&T) Divisions. The annual solicitations consist of topics relevant to the following S&T Directorate organizations: Borders and Maritime Security, Chemical/Biological Defense, Cyber Security, Explosives, and the First Responder Group.
Similar to the R&D programs of the S&T Directorate, the SBIR topics generally address the needs of the seven DHS Operational Units, i.e., U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Transportation Security Administration, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and U.S. Secret Service, as well as First Responders.
For the Phase II SBIR effort, the DHS S&T SBIR Program has a Cost Match feature for SBIR projects that attract matching cash from an outside investor. The purpose is to focus SBIR funding on those projects that are most likely to be developed into viable new products that DHS and others will buy and that will thereby make a major contribution to homeland security and/or economic capabilities. Click here for more information about the Cost Match feature.
The DHS S&T SBIR Program has several processes in place to accelerate the Phase I and Phase II award process to further satisfy operational requirements and commercial application, including but not limited to, the implementation of the OATS (Other Agency Technology Solutions) pilot program which leverages SBIR investments made by other agencies to fill DHS capability gaps and requirements. The intent of the OATS pilot is to help transition successful SBIR Phase II technology projects into both the government and private markets more rapidly and to provide DHS program managers with an opportunity to reduce program risk.
- Phase I awards are typically made within 90 days of selection.
- Phase II projects will be reviewed and awards will be made incrementally, as quickly as possible, to maintain the momentum of the Phase I effort.