DHS to help stimulate development of wearable technology for first responders

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On Tuesday the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) announced its first business accelerator program, EMERGE!, aimed at entrepreneurs who have innovative ideas that address the unique needs of the Homeland Security community and whose wearable technology could be adapted for first responder operations.

The accelerator program seeks innovative solutions that help the “responder of the future” save lives and carry out their mission, particularly in the area of wearable technologies, such as body-worn electronics, advanced sensors, and integrated voice and data communications embedded in a responder’s gear.

“First responders can benefit from these new emerging technologies, to not only ensure their personal safety, but to better save the lives of those they serve,” said DHS Deputy Under Secretary for Science and Technology Dr. Robert Griffin, a former firefighter and emergency manager. “There may be innovators who have ideas for the latest scientific advancements that can make a difference in helping these first responders.”

The EMERGE! Accelerator program will help innovators to develop and launch their ideas into investable companies by providing early market validation, mentoring and access to private investment. This program will accelerate the development of selected commercial wearable technologies and provide a path to introduce those technologies to a variety of markets, including Government sector partners.

This accelerator program is one part of S&T’s overall strategy to reinvigorate federal government research and development. Through prize competitions, open dialogues, and accelerator programs, S&T is hoping to attract innovators, keeping pace with the speed of technological advancement.

S&T’s EMERGE! Accelerator program was developed in partnership with the United States Air Force Academy, DHS Center of Innovation, and the Center for Innovative Technology.

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Eric.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

One thought on “DHS to help stimulate development of wearable technology for first responders”

  1. This tracking stuff seems great but a couple things concern me 1) it seems to reflect a shift towards having overhead want to ” drive the bus” which could potentialy lead to a pile of 2nd guessing for the field folks especially if that bus driver isn’t a good one and 2) how often when any problem arises in the field it usually involves some type of issue with the radios? Why not spend the money getting the radio situation fixed FIRST so then the “bus driver” can actually get ahold of someone if needed. Seems if they can figure out how to find us then reliable comms should not be too big of a reach…..


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