As part of the Small Business Innovation Research program, NASA has chosen 128 proposals to fund. In total, $96 million will be awarded to the recipients working on in-demand research topics. Neuromorphic computing, sensor and camera systems, new wheel concepts and solid-state oxygen concentrators are among the current projects. Unmanned delivery drones are in need of improved real-time processing for the mass amounts of data incoming from dozens of different sensors. Combining signals from cameras, avionics systems and traditional sensor types will improve collision avoidance with space objects but making use of all the collected data is still a challenge. Neuromorphic processors can offer low power consumption and accelerated processing for deep learning applications that may lead to more effective exploration efforts. California-based business Mentium Technologies, Inc. has been awarded funding to pursue the development of deep learning hardware accelerators that are able to achieve … [Read more...] about NASA pours $96 million into small businesses performing tech research
Small business innovation research
A team of Vanderbilt University scientists and engineers led by Professor John P. Wikswo has won an R&D 100 Award for their MultiWell MicroFormulator. The MultiWell MicroFormulator, developed at Vanderbilt and commercialized by CN Bio Innovations in the United Kingdom, provides customized real-time formulation, delivery and removal of cell culture media to each well of a 96-well plate for drug delivery, toxicology research, and personalized medicine. The "96-well plate" is a standard tool in biomedical and clinical research and essential to a wide range of laboratory assays and applications. It is beginning to be used for organoids and organs-on-chips that aim to recapitulate human physiology. "In 2015, Matthew Wagoner, then of AstraZeneca, approached me and said, 'I love your MicroFormulator, but I need one with 96 channels,'" Wikswo said. "Matt's request and the subsequent support from AstraZeneca changed the direction of my group's pump and valve development efforts, and the … [Read more...] about Vanderbilt researchers win an R&D100 Award for MultiWell MicroFormulator
The Droid Works. With only a skeleton website and very little information released, all she would say is that she planned to focus on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Speculation abounded. We here at Automaton guessed she'd be working on small or "micro" UAVs, given the dominance in the large UAV space by big defense companies who build things like the Predator and Reaper drones, as well as the prime opportunity to bring micro UAV research out of research labs. Turns out we were right! Last week the National Science Foundation announced it had awarded a Small Business Innovation Research grant to the Droid Works to create technologies that will allow small UAVs to navigate inside buildings. This technology, applied to emergency response situations, will save the lives of police officers, victims, and suspects. Emergency response teams have been slow to adopt unmanned systems to aid in hostage situations, search and rescue, fire fighting, and armed … [Read more...] about The Droid Works Receives First SBIR for ‘Indoor UAV’ Research
Informatics PhD thesis concludes that small & medium-sized machine tool businesses innovate through interim solutions and not by employing systematic R+D processesThe machine-tool sector innovates responding to the needs of customers and in an ad hoc manner, and not as a result of concrete R+D activities. This was the conclusion of sociologist Beatriz Otero, in a PhD thesis defended at the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and entitled, Made in Euskadi: innovating in the machine-tool sector in the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country. Ms Otero focused on small and medium-sized enterprises in the sector within the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country (CAPV), analysing their processes of innovation and their relation with other players. Moreover, she placed special attention on the influence of the region, on factors such as the educational system, the R+D systems and public policies, amongst others.Ms Otero undertook her study from the perspective of … [Read more...] about PhD thesis concludes that small & medium-sized machine tool businesses innovate through interim solutions and not by employing systematic R+D processes
HPC The selected businesses represent only a fraction of the hundreds that applied to participate in the first round of a new small business voucher pilot project. They represent 20 different states and will be working with nine national labs.As part of the pilot, another $13 million in vouchers will be awarded to small businesses in subsequent rounds, and officials have asked for a budget increase for the next fiscal year to expand the project.Dave Danielson, an assistant secretary with the Energy Department, said the nation's labs are science powerhouses that have cutting-edge supercomputers, high-tech laser facilities and some of the most brilliant minds on the planet — all strategic advantages that the U.S. has in the global race to develop clean energy technologies."But if we really want to accelerate our transition to a low-carbon economy, we have to accelerate the process of lab technology reaching the market and help our labs to collaborate with the private sector," … [Read more...] about Feds Invest Nearly $7M in Small Business to Boost Clean Tech
Apple fans are counting down to Apple's Wednesday announcement, at which time the company is expected to finally reveal the newest member -- or members? -- of its tablet family.As is usually the case with an Apple show-and tell, rumors and speculation surround the event. A message in the company's official invitation describes "something you have to see. And touch," fueling rumors that the newest innovations to the tablet will be a high-definition display.Even the product's name has been the subject of speculation. Although "iPad 3" may seem a logical choice, some reports peg it as "iPad HD." Whatever the label, if it has "iPad" anywhere in the title, it could face continued legal challenges in China.Proview, the electronics maker that disputes Apple's right to name its product "iPad," remains fighting for the name in both the U.S. and China. Apple says it purchased the patent from Proview in 2009, but recently the Chinese company claimed it has full rights to the name and even tried … [Read more...] about CUPERTINO BUSINESS REPORT Ready for Another Round of iPad Madness?
Supercomputers — International Data Corporation (IDC) announced the fourth round of recipients of the HPC Innovation Excellence Award at the SC12 supercomputer industry conference in Salt Lake City, UT. Prior winners were announced at the ISC'11, SC11, and ISC'12 supercomputing conferences.The HPC Innovation Excellence Award recognizes noteworthy achievements by users of high performance computing (HPC) technologies. The program's main goals are to showcase return on investment (ROI) and scientific success stories involving HPC; to help other users better understand the benefits of adopting HPC and justify HPC investments, especially for small and medium-size businesses (SMBs); to demonstrate the value of HPC to funding bodies and politicians; and to expand public support for increased HPC investments."IDC research has shown that HPC can greatly improve ROI and scientific advancement. The award program aims to collect a large set of success stories across many research … [Read more...] about IDC Announces Winners of Fourth HPC Innovation Excellence Awards
The promise of being able to quickly and accurately screen for diseases or chemical contaminants in a tiny drop of blood has long been an elusive goal. But scientist Daojing Wang says his company’s technology is up to the job.As a researcher at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), Wang and others developed a multinozzle emitter array (MEA), a silicon chip that can dramatically shorten the time it takes to identify proteins, peptides, and other molecular components within small volumes of biological samples. This patented technology is now being commercialized by Newomics Inc., a company Wang launched to further develop the product and build a platform for personalized health care.“We can improve the sensitivity and throughput of mass spectrometry for detecting biomarkers in blood or other biological fluids for precision medicine,” said Wang, founder and president of the company. “Our first product, the M3 … [Read more...] about Screening for Disease or Toxins in a Drop of Blood
Apple has made it a priority to lure small businesses to the Mac OS platform, reasoning that those businesses will be willing to abandon Windows in favor of a network that is easier to maintain without tremendous IT resources.Granted, adopting an Apple solution is more costly initially, Al Gillen, director of infrastructure software research at IDC, told the E-Commerce Times. "Apple typically charges a premium because they feel customers are getting better technology," he noted.But in the long run, higher up-front costs may be offset by lower networkmaintenance costs, particularly for a small business. After all, Appleis known for producing systems that require very little support and that are intuitive enough for even novice users to maintain.Apple director of product marketing for consumer applications Peter Lowe confirmed to the E-Commerce Times that Apple is aiming many of its products and initiatives squarely at the enterprise. And Brian Croll, Apple's senior director of software … [Read more...] about E-BUSINESS SPECIAL REPORT Should Small Business Go Mac?
The dollars spent by tech sector heavyweights on research and development number in the billions. For example, in the semiconductor space, Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) will have spent US$4 billion on R&D by the end of 2002. The company operates more than 75 labs staffed with 7,000 researchers, and it increased its R&D spending by 412 percent between 1991 and 2001.Determining a company's return on its R&D investment is not a clear-cut exercise. Until ROI is achieved, companies often find ways to pass the costs on to consumers or suffer reduced profits.But such outlays are necessary to nurture innovation in any company, according to IDC research director Mark Hall. He likened a business without R&D spending to a lake stocked with fish but never replenished. "You'll fish it to death, and before you know it, there won't be anything left," Hall told the E-Commerce Times.As to how much money is spent by tech firms, IDC analyst Dan Kusnetzky said he believes the range is between 5 and … [Read more...] about E-BUSINESS SPECIAL REPORT Who Pays for Tech Innovation?