The NSIN Defense Innovation Accelerator (DIA) leverages breakthrough technology to solve the real-world problems of the Department of Defense and commercial customers.


The Defense Innovation Accelerator (DIA), powered by FedTech, finds breakthrough Department of Defense (DoD) lab technology and leverages it to solve the real-world problems of DoD and commercial customers. Teams of entrepreneurs, working with DoD lab scientists and technologists, assess the market viability and the potential to commercialize DoD lab technologies.

What We Do

The NSIN Defense Innovation Accelerator pairs technology developed in Department of Defense (DoD) laboratories with those interested in starting a high-tech company. Teams are paired with knowledgeable instructors and mentors who have entrepreneurial experience and/or are experts in their field to guide the process. Working with top DoD research labs and inventors, teams will validate whether the technology can be commercialized to solve problems faced by the DoD and beyond. At the end of the cohort, teams will present labs with a market assessment report and may seek to form companies and license the technology.

How It Works

Over approximately two months, teams will explore the commercial viability of a cutting-edge technology from a top-tier research and development lab within the DoD and potentially create a company through licensing the technology. For 2020, the following themes have been prioritized for development and acceleration:

  • Cybersecurity and secure communications
  • Autonomous systems
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Virtual reality and computer vision
  • Sensors
  • Human performance

Entrepreneur Participants

Teams of entrepreneurs assess the commercialization potential of Defense technologies hand-in-hand with lab scientists and technologists, and seek new paths for those technologies to solve the real-world problems of Defense and commercial customers.

While US citizenship is not required to participate in the program, some labs mandate that their teams be comprised of US citizens or Green Card holders only.

The application period for Entrepreneurs is closed.

Lab Technology Selection

Inventors must be able to commit to spending one hour per week working with teams during the cohort, and to participating in the Kickoff event (at the end of June 2020).

At a minimum, provisional patents should be filed. Higher TRL technologies (≥4) with demonstrated prototypes are strongly preferred. Recent inventions (within the last 3 years) are also preferred.

Labs interested in the NSIN DIA program can submit interest here for consideration in a future cohort.

Lab Tech Application

Important Dates for the 2020 Cohort

22 APR, 2020: Application Recruitment Begins

28 MAY, 2020: Application Recruitment Ends

30 JUN, 2020: Phase I Begins

03 SEP, 2020: Pitching Event / Phase I Ends

10 SEP, 2020: Phase II Begins

03 DEC, 2020: Demo Day / Phase II Ends

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About FedTech

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