Commercialization Readiness Program (CRP)
The Air Force has implemented a strategically-driven process that directly links Program Executive Officers' representatives to Air Force Research Laboratory Technical Points of Contact (TPOCs) to generate topics that are of high interest to Air Force product centers. Previously known as the Commercialization Pilot Program (CPP), successful implementation of this process occurred during FY06 and FY07. This technology-based needs-gathering process is ongoing. In 2011, the CPP was reauthorized by Congress and was renamed as the Commercialization Readiness Program (CRP). It translates the product center technology needs to SBIR topics using CRP Transition Agents. Topic development now uses a focusing strategy resulting in optimal use of SBIR funds.
A second approach matches up product center prime/supply chain contractors with companies that are working a Department of Defense SBIR Phase II in areas relevant to the product centers' technology needs.
- Industry selects small businesses to interview from data mined SBIR Phase II projects.
- These companies are invited to participate in an Air Force / Industry Technology Interchange Workshop.
- Following the workshop, Transition Agents contact participating prime/supply chain contractors to identify which small businesses share areas of mutual interest and are a potential partner.
- Transition Agents re-engage with the corresponding product center that initiated the need and the TPOC that manages the SBIR project upon confirming a new teaming arrangement.
- All stakeholders enter into an agreement titled the SBIR Technology Transition Plan (STTP). The STTP identifies the roles and responsibilities of the stakeholders as well as assistance required by the Small Business to achieve a Phase III project.