Army awards prizes for breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, computing, and sensing




(From left) Chief of Strategic Partnerships at the Army Research Laboratory, Zeke Topolsky, Senior Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology, Yong Jie Pang, and Director of the Army Award Competitions and the Army’s SBIR Applied Program, Dr. Matt Willis, answer entrants’ questions during the xTechSearch 6 competition finals held May 10-12 in Arlington, Virginia. (U.S. military)
(Photo source: US Army)

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WASHINGTON — Ten small companies with advanced technologies in artificial intelligence, computing, sensing and other critical readiness and modernization capabilities are the latest recipients of cash prizes awarded through the U.S. Army’s xTech Program, a service competition series that has revolutionized how to attract and encourage innovation from unconventional sources.

The 10 winning companies were among 20 small companies invited to present their innovative solutions during the xTechSearch 6 Finals competition held May 10-12 in Arlington, Virginia. Each winner received a $25,000 cash prize, the opportunity to participate in the Business Accelerator Program and an invitation to submit their solution to a Small Business Innovation Research Contract for the Army worth up to $250,000.

The winning companies are:

  • IMSAR LLC, Springville, Utah – “Expanding the Performance of Slippery Radars in Contested Environments”
  • Legionarius LLC, Wilmington, Dell. – “Smart shirt for wound detection (shot, shrapnel, cut, burn) combined with ATAK and BATDOK”
  • Macro-Eyes Inc. , Val City, WA – “Visibility-Based Inventory Management”
  • QuSecure Inc. San Mateo, CA – “US Army Flexible Quantum Cybersecurity”
  • RISE Robotics, Somerville, MA – “Solid-state technology to power the next generation of US Army heavy machinery”
  • SixMap Inc. Pasadena, CA – “The next generation of real-time network mapping for computer network operations”
  • Somewear Labs, San Francisco, CA – “Global Hotspot: Connecting Untethered Soldiers Around the World”
  • Stealth Power, Austin, TX – “Idle Reduction Technology to bridge the gap between the present and the future of military electric vehicles”
  • Storagenergy Technologies Inc. , Salt Lake City, Utah – “High Power Battery Without Anodes for Unmanned Ground Vehicles and Beyond”
  • Tomahawk Robotics, Melbourne, FL – “Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning at the Tactical Edge”

“Everyone, regardless of whether they are a finalist or not, is a winner in my book because they receive mentorship from the military, the program executive offices, the future military leadership and the community, and you build relationships,” said Yong Jie Pang, principal deputy assistant secretary of the Army for Acquisitions. Logistics and technology, who addressed the finalists. “We want to help you continue your partnership with the military to help us innovate faster, fail, pivot, and ultimately modernize and digitize the military.”

xTechSearch 6 opened in the summer of 2021 with a call for concept white papers for dual-use science and technology solutions that the military can leverage to advance critical modernization programs or fill gaps in existing capabilities. In addition to artificial intelligence, computing, and sensing, the white papers have covered a wide range of technologies that are critically important to the military, including advanced materials; command, control and communications; electronic security; visual display of information; electronics. human performance; Supersonic speed. machine learning; power generation and management; Robots and artificial environments.

Of the nearly 300 small businesses that submitted white papers, 50 were selected to receive $5,000 and the opportunity to present their project to a panel of Army and Defense Department experts. The event concluded in November 2021 with awarding 20 companies $15,000 and an invitation to compete in the finals.

Founded in 2018, xTechSearch strives to integrate small businesses and non-traditional suppliers into the Army’s science and technology ecosystem by providing opportunities for direct exposure to Army laboratories, program executive offices, and program managers from across the Army. Participants receive detailed feedback from military and Department of Defense stakeholders and have access to training, mentorship, and other supporting infrastructure as they compete to determine how best to align their technology solutions with real users and purchasers within the military. Finalists are accepted into the xTech Accelerator – at no cost to businesses – to receive further mentorship and networking opportunities to help grow their companies for government and commercial users.

The Army xTech program holds several competitions annually, ranging from open competitions through iterations of xTechSearch, to technology-specific competitions targeting specific military needs and challenges. For all competition information, visit the xTechSearch website.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology provides the U.S. Soldier with a critical advantage in any mission by developing, acquiring, fielding, and maintaining the best equipment and services in the world, and by leveraging technologies and capabilities to meet current needs. and the needs of the army in the future.

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