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Defence Security

DASA launches SPAA

The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) has launched a new Themed Competition called Sample Preservation, Analysis and Attribution (SPAA), run on behalf of the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) and the US Department of Defense (DoD).

Image courtesy DASA

This competition seeks proposals for innovations that could help the successful identification of chemical and biological (ChemBio) materials and/or bring perpetrators to justice.

The production, stockpiling or use of hazardous ChemBio materials for nefarious purposes represents an enduring and sensitive issue for both the defence and security sectors.

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Investigation into events involving ChemBio materials have many technical challenges, starting from the initial point of collection by the first attending responder, all the way through to the screening and analytical tools used to identify and/or potentially attribute the material of interest. This competition therefore seeks novel and innovative approaches in order to address these existing challenges.

One of the goals of SPAA is to engage with a non-traditional ChemBio supplier base in order to yield innovative solutions to current problems.

Key dates and funding
The total funding available for this competition is £1 million (excluding VAT).
The deadline to submit a proposal is midday on Tuesday 30th April 2024 (BST).
Attend the launch webinar to learn more in an open forum on 19th March.

Challenge areas
The challenges outlined in this competition are diverse in nature, therefore it is anticipated that proposals will address a certain area rather than covering multiple requirements.

There are three main challenge areas where innovative solutions and approaches are being sought:

  • Challenge 1: New screening technologies for rapidly detecting or identifying the presence or class of hazardous ChemBio materials in a sample
  • Challenge 2: New sample collection/preservation systems that better maintain the integrity and viability of hazardous samples
  • Challenge 3: New analytical approaches to improve the forensic exploitation and the attribution of ChemBio materials and/or recovered chemical/biological weapons material (RC/BWM)
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Up to £1 million is available to fund multiple innovations at Technology Readiness level (TRL) 2-4 to deliver fieldable prototypes/software (TRL6+) to support investigations into ChemBio incidents.

Supporting events
Launch Webinar: 19th March 2024
This launch webinar provides the opportunity for you to learn more about the Competition in further detail, with the competition team and the option to ask your own questions.

Register here to attend

1-2-1s: 26th March 2024
A 20 minute 1-2-1 session with a member of the competition team, where you can ask your own specific questions.

Register here to attend – booking is on a first come first served basis.

Submit a proposal
DASA welcomes novel ideas that can benefit end-users working in UK Defence and Security. If you can supply a novel approach that can address challenges associated with sample surface collection/preservation, analysis and attribution (SPAA) of hazardous chemical and biological (ChemBio) materials, DASA wants to hear from you.

Read the full competition document to learn more and submit a proposal:
www.gov.uk/government/publications/sample-preservation-analysis-and-attribution-spaa
 

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