NASA defers tech licensing fees for entrepreneurs

NASA defers tech licensing fees for entrepreneurs

The Startup NASA initiative allows entrepreneurs to defer fees for the first three years on any of NASA’s 1,200 patented technologies – from materials and coatings to sensors, aeronautics technologies, instrumentation and more.

The initiative addresses two common problems start-ups face: raising capital and securing intellectual property rights.

Finding the technologies available for license is simply a click away. NASA created a streamlined, online patent portal covering 15 categories of its technologies. Once a desired technology is identified, an online application can be filled out and submitted through the website.

Although the license itself is free, the start-up companies must adhere to the following guidelines:

  • The offer is open only to companies formed to commercialize the licensed NASA technology.
  • "No up-front payment" means NASA waives the initial licensing fees, and there are no minimum fees for the first three years. Once the company starts selling a product, NASA will collect a standard net royalty fee.
  • This announcement applies only to non-exclusive licenses, although NASA will consider exclusivity if the start-up wishes to negotiate.
  • Companies entering into these licenses are bound by all requirements in federal licensing statutes and NASA policies, including development of a commercialization plan and reporting on efforts to achieve practical application.

"The Startup NASA initiative leverages the results of our cutting-edge research and development so entrepreneurs can take that research -- and some risks -- to create new products and new services," said David Miller, NASA's chief technologist.

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