NASA's belief that big ideas can come from small businesses has led the space agency to select 108 proposals from 99 small US firms that might support future missions and hold promise for commercialization.
The proposals span a variety of topic areas, including next-generation sensors, space communications and navigation, robotics, health monitoring for astronauts, in-space propulsion, and advanced telescope systems to enable a new class of observatories.
Five of the companies selected will focus on IT projects, such as technologies for large-scale numerical simulation. Accelogic LLC submitted a proposal to help NASA accelerate communication-intensive applications through data compression techniques. The Florida company provides accelerated field-programmable gate array numerical libraries, which are used to solve complex computational problems. The compression technology has potential uses in aerospace, weather forecasting, and climate research.
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— Elena Malykhina writes for Information Week. Her work has also appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Scientific America, Newsday, and the Associated Press.