- BC: Biological and Chemical
The Biological and Chemical Technologies (BC) topic addresses innovation in the life sciences and chemical areas including Biological Technologies, Biomedical Technologies, Environmental Technologies, and Chemical Technologies. Biological Technologies includes the subtopic areas of research tools, bioinstrumentation, biosensors, computational biology and bioinformatics, synthetic biology and metabolic engineering, fermentation and cell culture technologies, and sustainable agriculture using biotechnology. Biomedical Technologies includes materials, diagnostics, drug delivery, tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, biomedical engineering, biomechanics, and imaging technologies. Environmental Technologies includes energy storage, management and use, renewable fuels and energy, and waste treatment. Chemical Technologies includes bio-based chemicals and renewable chemical process technology, separation technologies, renewable polymers, and catalytic process technology. The BC program seeks to support high-risk, high-payback projects where there is a significant market opportunity, the technology is transformational, and there is a significant societal impact. We are looking for discontinuous innovations aimed at achieving increased performance, reduced cost, and/or new functions or applications that will catalyze new business opportunities for small businesses in today's global bioeconomy.Keywords: Metabolic Engineering, Biomanufacturing, Sustainable Agriculture, Bioinstrumentation, Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Biomedical Engineering, Biomechanics, Separation Technologies, Renewable Polymers, life science tools, biomedical materials, medical imaging, renewable fuels, and waste treatment, bio-based chemicals, and catalytic process technology, Regenerative medicine, drug delivery, Biosensors, Diagnostics, Synthetic Biology, tissue engineering, energy storage
- EA: Education Applications
The Education Application (EA) topic addresses the challenges of advancing STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education for all American students, to nurture innovation, and to ensure the long-term economic prosperity of the Nation. The urgency of this task is underscored by the need to ensure that the United States continues to excel in science, technology, and innovation in the 21st century. Proposed applications should provide storyboards, sketches, or descriptions of how the proposed application will work and provide examples of how users would interact with the application. Projects that propose technologies or products similar to those in the marketplace must make the case that their efforts are not incremental and will lead to sufficient revenues that justify an NSF SBIR investment. Projects that can be easily replicated by potential competitors are not responsive to the Educational Application (EA) topic.Keywords: Education, K-12, college, graduate, entrepreneurship, STEM, pedagogy, learning, Gaming, AssessmentPoint of Contact:
- EI: Electronics, Information and Communication Technologies
The NSF SBIR Program conceptualizes Electronics, Information and Communication Technologies in the form of a five-layer stack. Each layer of the stack builds upon the layer(s) below and supports the layer(s) above. At the foundation of this stack are devices. Devices (ED) are the building blocks for Components (EC) that are assembled into Systems (ES) built for Applications (IA) that are employed to deliver Services (IS). Innovations across the stack can range widely, and hardware as well as software innovations will be supported. Considering the two ends of the stack, device innovations will typically employ unique physical phenomena for their competitive advantage and be embodied in hardware, whereas innovations in services will typically be more architectural in nature and be embodied in software.Keywords: photonics, Energy/Power, Optoelectronics, Radio spectrum, MEMS/NEMS, 3-D Printing, Smart Grid, Assistive Technologies, Human Computer Interfaces, Knowledge & Data Management, Instrumentation, Robotics, Broadband, wireless, Sensors
- NM: Nanotechnology, Advanced Materials, and Manufacturing
The Nanotechnology, Advanced Materials and Manufacturing (NM) topic addresses innovations and development of new materials, devices, machines, structures and manufacturing processes for the advancement of the competitive nature and state of the art for U.S. industry. NM includes materials and manufacturing technologies such as electronic materials and processes, high-temperature materials, structural materials, coatings, composites, nanomanufacturing, printing, patterning and lithography, machining, casting, joining, additive manufacturing, self-assembly, and other related research areas. The NM program seeks to support high-risk, high-payoff innovative technologies with the potential for significant impact on business, consumers, and society, thereby catalyzing new business opportunities for small businesses in today's global marketplace. NSF is committed to supporting scientific discoveries to benefit society and to emphasize private sector commercialization. Novel technologies aimed at achieving increased performance, reduced cost, and/or new functions or applications are of great interest.