xTech Competition

Army offers cash prizes for a novel Precision Grenadier System

Published: 06/15/2023
xTech Soldier

By Daniel Smoot, Office of Army Prize Competitions and Army Applied SBIR Program

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Army invites businesses to participate in the first iteration of xTechSoldier Lethality, a prize competition for enhancing Soldier effectiveness via a novel Precision Grenadier System.

In collaboration with the U.S. Army Program Executive Office Soldier, the competition – led by the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology – aims to facilitate the development of U.S. business technologies to support a more lethal and resilient force. As a result, proposed technologies must be portable, semi-automatic, magazine-fed integrated armament systems that offer greater precision than legacy grenade launchers.

“A precision grenadier system, using a direct-fire round, reduces Soldiers’ reliance on other units for fire support,” said Lt. Col. Micah Rue, Product Manager of Individual Weapons. “This minimizes Soldiers’ exposure to danger during engagements by enabling them to remain safely behind cover, while still being able to neutralize the opposing force and reduce collateral damage.”

Via the xTechSoldier Lethality Competition, businesses that propose PGS solutions will participate in three rounds with cash prizes up to $975,000. These rounds will last through April 2025, culminating in a potential follow-on contract award or agreement with PEO Soldier worth up to $2 million. The rounds include:

Round One: Concept white paper

  • Applicants will submit a five-page concept white paper, with an optional 3–5-minute video, outlining their technology, concept of operations, mission alignment, physical attributes, fire control, system components and integration. Following submission, a panel of Department of Defense experts from across the science and technology ecosystem will review the proposals and select up to five firms to receive $15,000 cash prizes and an opportunity to proceed to the technology pitch round.

Round Two: Technology pitches

  • First-round winners will partake in an in-person and/or virtual-pitch between August and September 2023, displaying their technology concept, design, models and data to a panel of DoD experts. The judging panel will then select up to three finalists to receive $300,000 each and an invitation to participate in the final demonstration round.

Round Three: Final demonstration

  • Finalists selected following the technology pitches will receive an invitation 6-18 months after notification to conduct in-person proof-of-concept demonstrations of their systems to a panel of Army and DoD experts. The winning firm can potentially earn a follow-on contract or agreement for up to $2 million.

Eligible businesses that wish to participate must submit their five-page white papers by 5 p.m. EDT on July 12, 2023. For all competition-related information, please visit the xTechSoldier Lethality Competition page.

Established in 2018, the Army xTech Program strives to integrate small and nontraditional businesses into the Army’s science and technology ecosystem. It provides opportunities for direct exposure to laboratories, program executive offices and program managers across the Army.

Participants receive detailed feedback from Army and DoD stakeholders and have access to training, mentorship and other support infrastructure. This support structure helps guide businesses through the competition and determine where their solutions best align within the Army.

The xTech Program holds several competitions per year. These include open-topic competitions, such as xTechSearch, as well as technology-specific competitions that target key Army challenges. For additional xTech information, please visit the Army xTech competition website.

The Army Applied SBIR Program releases contract opportunities on a rolling basis to respond to the Army’s current and expected warfighting technology needs. For eligibility information and a list of open solicitations, please visit the Army Applied SBIR website.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology offers the American Soldier a decisive advantage in any mission by developing, acquiring, fielding and sustaining the world’s finest equipment and services. It also leverages its technologies and capabilities to meet current and future Soldier needs. To learn more, please visit the ASA(ALT) website.

xTech Soldier

Army offers cash prizes for a novel Precision Grenadier System

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