Transitioning Technologies For Use By First Responders

Sherry Harowitz


In 2009, DHS's Science and Technology Directorate established the First Responder Integrated Product Team (IPT) to help with determining what first responders around the country needed in terms of technology and to help projects that met those needs to transition from R&D to commercialization, Science and Technology Directorate First Responders Division Director Dr. Robert Griffin told a House subcommittee.

Projects for funding are selected based on a number of criteria including: the practitioner-identified gaps, criticality/operational impact, threat likelihood, applicability, state of the science, cost-benefit analysis, ease of integration, transition likelihood, and time needed to prototype, he said.

"One example of how FRG partners to bring solutions to operations is the Wildland Firefighters Advanced Personal Protection System," he said. It will be a "certified garment system that improves radiant thermal protection; reduces heat stress; and improves form, fit, and function when compared to existing garment systems."

He went on to note: "Transitioning technology for regular use by first responders remains a critical challenge for S&T. To help mitigate this challenge, FRG leverages the Center for Commercialization of Advanced Technology (CCAT) process, in coordination with San Diego State University, to solicit proposals from the vendor community for technologies that address gaps identified by first responders. The goal of this process is to develop technologies in 12 to 18 months that meet 80 percent or more of the requirement identified by the first responder community, with transition occurring six to 12 months after project completion."

Here are some technologies cited that have been transitioned:



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