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NASA Selects Top Three iTech Innovators for Continued Collaboration

· News Release

Judges at NASA's second iTech Forum have selected the top three best innovative ideas for continued collaboration that may lead to new high technology products that have the potential to benefit NASA in the future, and the nation.

After two days of entrepreneurs presenting their proposed solutions to tough technology challenges, the top three teams were selected by judges consisting of NASA’s chief technologists, space industry leaders and potential investors. Hosted by the National Institute of Aerospace in Hampton, Virginia, from July 12-13, the forum brought together 10 finalists from across the U.S. to compete and showcase their innovations.

"Technological innovation is a major force in economic growth," said Douglas Terrier, NASA's acting chief technologist at NASA Headquarters, Washington. "NASA iTech is designed to spark innovative new technology development outside of traditional government-industry partnerships. NASA iTech offers a platform for entrepreneurs to present their technologies to potential investors and stakeholders.”

NASA iTech is an initiative designed to identify cutting edge technologies that may solve problems on Earth that also have the potential to solve some of NASA’s deep space exploration challenges. Judges selected the top three innovations based on criteria including technical viability, the likely impact on future space exploration and commercialization potential.

"NASA iTech is unique in that it reveals groundbreaking technology solutions and provides a catalyst for industry investors, government agencies and small businesses to collaborate with the innovators to mature their technologies for both space and commercial applications,” said Kira Blackwell, Innovation program executive in the Office of the Chief Technologist at NASA Headquarters in Washington.

The top three winners of NASA iTech’s Cycle II announced at the conclusion of the forum were:

Context AI - Santa Clara, California
Innovation: Diagnostic Digital Biomarkers
Challenge Area: Medical Systems and Operations

Children’s National Health System - Omniboros Team - Washington, DC
Innovation: Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot (STAR) for Terrestrial and Extraterrestrial Unmet Needs
Challenge Area: Autonomy

University of Houston - Houston, Texas
Innovation: Biologically Inspired Adaptive Anti-Icing Surfaces
Challenge Area: X-Factor Innovations

NASA iTech is an initiative by the Office of the Chief Technologist in cooperation with the National Institute of Aerospace. The Office of the Chief Technologist provides the strategy and leadership that integrates NASA’s technology development and innovation activities to enable NASA's current and future missions.

For information about NASA iTech, visit:

For information about NASA’s Office of the Chief Technologist, visit:

Timothy Allen
National Institute of Aerospace, Hampton, Va.

Gina Anderson
Headquarters, Washington

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