Nonprofit organization funds innovative homeland security technologies

Published 10 November 2005

San Diego, California-based Center for Commercialization of Advanced Technology (CCAT) is an organization with a difference: It is a non-profit outfit providing small grants, market studies, patent assistance, and other help to companies making homeland security technology. The Defense Department provides the funds for the organization, which has a budget of $5.4 million in fiscal 2006.

Note that CCAT was established in July 2001 - two months before the 9/11 attacks. Since then, it has awarded more than $16 million in grants to entrepreneurs, university labs, and government research centers. Rockville, Maryland-based 20/20 GeneSystems received a $100,000 grant from CCAT, and Jonathan Cohen, the president and CEO of the company, is grateful: “… there is a surprising lack of support for new technologies,” he says. “CCAT is extremely helpful in filling a substantial unmet need, a niche that seems to have slipped through the cracks in terms of first-responders.” 20/20 GeneSystems makes BioCheck kits, a $25 test kits to detect anthrax powder hoaxes. Two other companies which have received funding from CCAT are San Diego, California-based Intecon Systems, which makes decontamination spray for chemical and biological agents, and Centennial, Colorado-based LitEye, which makes an eye patch that can display maps of collapsed buildings or other information stored on a computer somewhere else.

-see this CQ report (sub. req.); read more about CCAT at the organization Web site; and see the Web sites of 20/20 GeneSystems | LitEye