National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Goddard Space Flight CenterGoddard Space Flight Center

SBIR/STTR Programs

Submit R&D Challenges
What is the SBIR / STTR program?
The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs ( enable small businesses and small businesses collaborating with universities, respectively, to compete for opportunities to solve selected R&D challenges faced by various government agencies within the United States.  Similar to other agencies, NASA’s SBIR/STTR programs ( generally have 3 phases:  Phase I (6-month study on scientific, technical, and commercial feasibility), Phase II (24-month development, demonstration, and delivery of the innovation), and Phase III (reaching successful commercialization – no SBIR/STTR funds). NASA announces a Phase I solicitation each year (typically open November through January) and grants Phase I awards thereafter (typically in April). Successful Phase I recipients are often invited to participate in follow-on Phase II competitions. The R&D conducted by Phase I and Phase II winners is designed to complement the internal R&D conducted within each NASA Center including GSFC. Solicitation subtopics are harvested from GSFC researchers and a down-selected set is included in the NASA-wide solicitation. Awarded projects based upon GSFC-submitted subtopics are generally managed by the SPO but are specifically managed by the designated Contracting Office Technical Representative (COR) within GSFC.

 Who can submit a GSFC SBIR/STTR subtopic for consideration?

Any civil servant working at NASA GSFC. Contractors cannot submit subtopics.

 What constitutes a viable SBIR / STTR subtopic for submission?

Any R&D need that would substantially impact a strategic thrust by NASA can be considered.

 Why should a GSFC researcher submit subtopics for consideration?

NASA’s SBIR/STTR programs are designed to foster entrepreneurial innovations while simultaneously solving critical NASA R&D challenges. Monies allocated to the program do not cannibalize existing NASA R&D budgets. So, submitting a subtopic for consideration is a win-win for the NASA researcher and innovative entrepreneur.

When should a GSFC researcher submit a subtopic, to whom, and how?

Contact the SPO’s Aprille Ericsson or Ramsey Smith to learn more about the schedule for SBIR subtopic harvesting or visit NASA’s SBIR/STTR program web site.

Joseph Famiglietti
(301) 286-1833

Ramsey L. Smith, Ph.D.
(301) 286-5974



SBIR/STTR Program Structure:

Frequently Asked Questions