NASA Awards $15.75 Million to US Small Businesses for Continued R&D

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — Twenty-one American small businesses will assist in research relevant to NASA’s Moon to Mars exploration approach as well as other needs across the agency. The technology development could also bring about Earth-based applications.

The Phase II awards are part of NASA’s Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program. The research and technology proposals, collectively valued at $15.75 million, will be completed through partnerships between the selected small businesses and U.S. research institutions—a requirement of STTR.

“To date, NASA’s STTR program has awarded close to $300 million to deserving small businesses and research institutions across the country,” said Jim Reuter, associate administrator for the agency’s Space Technology Mission Directorate in Washington. “With continued investment, NASA is enabling companies to pursue and develop innovative ideas that meet technology needs of the federal government.”

The selected proposals will advance capabilities in the areas of aeronautics, science, human exploration and operations, and space technology. Researchers will study new technologies for lunar landers, food production, small spacecraft and more.

The proposals were selected according to their technical merit and feasibility, in addition to the experience, qualifications and facilities of the submitting organization. Additional criteria included effectiveness of the work plan and commercial potential. 

Only small businesses awarded Phase I STTR contracts are eligible to submit a proposal for a Phase II funding agreement. Phase II is focused on the development, demonstration and delivery of the innovation. Phase II projects are chosen as a result of competitive evaluations and based on selection criteria provided in the solicitation. Phase II contracts last for 24 months with maximum funding of $750,000.

STTR stimulates technological innovation in the private sector, increases the commercial application of research results, encourages participation of socially and economically disadvantaged persons and women-owned small businesses, and fosters technology transfer through cooperative research and development between small businesses and research institutions.

The STTR program is sponsored by NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate and managed at NASA’s Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley. Small business innovations supported by both the STTR and Small Business Innovation Research programs could contribute to Artemis, helping to land the first woman and next man on the Moon by 2024, establish a sustainable presence on the lunar surface by 2028, and prepare for the next giant leap – sending astronauts to Mars.

For a complete list of the latest STTR Phase II selections, visit:

For more information about NASA’s investments in space technology, visit: