THIS IS SPARTN.
Special Program Awards
for Required Technology Needs
POWERED BY ARMY ASA(ALT) SBIR & THE ARMY APPLICATIONS LABORATORY
A NEW PROGRAM FOR A NEW ERA
Finding a way to work with the U.S. Army can be tough for small businesses. That’s not news for anyone who’s ever tried, and it’s not news to the people inside the Army trying to drive change. But, like you, we’re tired of talking about the problems and ready to get about the business of solving them.
So we’ve introduced a brand new program to the Army — and to the small businesses that want to work with us — called the Special Program Awards for Required Technology Needs. Or, simply, SPARTN.
If that name conjures up ancient warriors or obstacle courses, that’s perfect. We’re all about having the courage to push past our comfort zones and conquer new ground.
BRINGING SPARTN TO LIFE
Led by the Army ASA(ALT) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) team and bolstered by AAL models and outreach, SPARTN blends government and industry best practices to introduce a new whole-of-Army, collaborative approach to innovation. This novel approach is made possible by tapping funding opportunities through the SBIR program. The result is a way to solve Army problems faster and accelerate the process by which successful technology is purchased by the Army.
The initial SPARTN program features a challenging and important problem statement from problem owners across the Army. You can find more details on the initial topic below. SPARTN programs represent some of our biggest problems and the ones we want to work closely with commercial industry to solve.
Here’s what makes SPARTN different:
- Problems released through SPARTN are tied to the Army’s critical needs and to other focused modernization efforts
- Faster contracting speed, with the goal of having companies on contract within 30 days of close (vs. up to 180 days)
- Option to join a problem-specific cohort for end-to-end access to Army decision makers and end users
- Potential for $2.5 million total value follow-on contract to build a prototype related to the specific problem
- Acquisition teams included early with the goal of easing transition & building new tech into recurring Army budgets
- Potential for future high-value contracts via SBIR, other government funds, and private investment that you secure
Reloading the cannon armament of Self-Propelled Howitzer Systems (SPHS) is a highly manual process. A limited number of projectiles and propellant charges are stored in each vehicle. Right now, those elements must be pulled from their stowed position and loaded into the cannon by hand any time we need to fire. After one round is fired, the breech has to be cleared and the process repeated — one munition at a time.
We need a way to do this better, both to reduce the physical strain on Soldiers and to keep up with our mission during the next generation of Army operations. As part of the SPARTN program, the Army is exploring alternative cannon reloading approaches that can support high, sustained rates of fire and subsystem technologies that can optimize this ammunition handling process.
Deadline to ask questions is September 17, 2020.
Deadline to apply is 12pm EST October 08, 2020.
THE COHORT COMPONENT
AAL is putting our Cohort Program model to work for SPARTN. Companies that are selected to help solve a SPARTN problem will also be invited to join a focused cohort to gain deeper insight into the problem and direct interaction with Army stakeholders and end users.
While joining a cohort isn’t required to participate in the SPARTN program, it can provide a deeper level of insight to help refine your solution. Take a moment to learn more about this unique model and the benefits of participating.
DIVE INTO SPARTN PROBLEMS
Learn more about the SPARTN program and problems with these videos, including recordings of our live webinars on the SPARTN program and the Fire Faster problem. Don’t forget — the application window for Fire Faster closes at 12pm EST 10.08.2020.
POWERED BY SBIR. BACKED BY AAL.
SPARTN unites Army ASA(ALT) SBIR funds and AAL’s cohort model to create a program designed with solvers in mind. This program is designed for US-based companies with fewer than 500 employees.
By using SBIR funding, companies receive robust data rights protection and the potential for sole source follow-on contracts. Optional participation in the cohort, led by AAL, will give companies access to key Army stakeholders and end users so they can better understand the problem. This competitive awards-based program is the latest tool to help small businesses advance their technology while supporting Army modernization priorities.