10 U.S. Code § 2359a - Defense Research and Development Rapid Innovation Program

(a) Program Established.—
The Secretary of Defense shall establish a competitive, merit-based program to accelerate the fielding of technologies developed pursuant to phase II Small Business Innovation Research Program projects, phase II Small Business Technology Transfer Program projects, technologies developed by the defense laboratories, and other innovative technologies (including dual use technologies).
The purpose of this program is to stimulate innovative technologies and reduce acquisition or lifecycle costs, address technical risks, improve the timeliness and thoroughness of test and evaluation outcomes, and rapidly insert such products directly in support of primarily major defense acquisition programs, but also other defense acquisition programs that meet critical national security needs.
(b) Guidelines.—The Secretary shall issue guidelines for the operation of the program. At a minimum such guidance shall provide for the following:
The issuance of one or more broad agency announcements or the use of any other competitive or merit-based processes by the Department of Defense for candidate proposals in support of defense acquisition programs as described in subsection (a).
The review of candidate proposals by the Department of Defense and by each military department and the merit-based selection of the most promising cost-effective proposals for funding through contracts, cooperative agreements, and other transactions for the purposes of carrying out the program.
The total amount of funding provided to any project under the program from funding provided under subsection (d) shall not exceed $6,000,000.
No project shall receive more than a total of two years of funding under the program from funding provided under subsection (d), unless the Secretary, or the Secretary’s designee, approves funding for any additional year.
Mechanisms to facilitate transition of follow-on or current projects carried out under the program into defense acquisition programs, through the use of the authorities of section 2302e of this title or such other authorities as may be appropriate to conduct further testing, low rate production, or full rate production of technologies developed under the program.
Projects are selected using merit-based selection procedures and the selection of projects is not subject to undue influence by Congress or other Federal agencies.
A preference under the program for funding small business concerns.
(c) Treatment Pursuant to Certain Congressional Rules.—
Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to require or enable any official of the Department of Defense to provide funding under this section to any earmark as defined pursuant to House Rule XXI, clause 9, or any congressionally directed spending item as defined pursuant to Senate Rule XLIV, paragraph 5.
(d) Funding.—
Subject to the availability of appropriations for such purpose and to the limitation under paragraph (2), the amounts authorized to be appropriated for research, development, test, and evaluation for a fiscal year may be used for such fiscal year for the program established under subsection (a).
During any fiscal year, the total amount of awards in an amount greater than $3,000,000 made under the program established under subsection (a) may not exceed 25 percent of the amount made available to carry out such program during such fiscal year.
(e) Transfer Authority.—
The Secretary may transfer funds available for the program to the research, development, test, and evaluation accounts of a military department, defense agency, or the unified combatant command for special operations forces pursuant to a proposal, or any part of a proposal, that the Secretary determines would directly support the purposes of the program.
The transfer authority provided in this subsection is in addition to any other transfer authority available to the Department of Defense.
Prior Provisions

A prior section 2359a, added Pub. L. 107–314, div. A, title II, § 242(a)(1), Dec. 2, 2002, 116 Stat. 2494; amended Pub. L. 109–163, div. A, title II, § 255(a), Jan. 6, 2006, 119 Stat. 3180; Pub. L. 109–364, div. A, title X, § 1071(a)(2), Oct. 17, 2006, 120 Stat. 2398; Pub. L. 110–181, div. A, title II, § 233, Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 46; Pub. L. 110–417, [div. A], title II, § 253(b), Oct. 14, 2008, 122 Stat. 4402, related to Technology Transition Initiative, prior to repeal by Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title II, § 251(a)(1), Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1347.


2019—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 116–92, § 878(a)(1), inserted “phase II Small Business Technology Transfer Program projects,” after “projects,”.

Subsec. (b)(3). Pub. L. 116–92, § 878(a)(2)(A), substituted “$6,000,000.” for “$3,000,000, unless the Secretary, or the Secretary’s designee, approves a larger amount of funding for the project.”

Subsec. (b)(7). Pub. L. 116–92, § 878(a)(2)(B), added par. (7).

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 116–92, § 878(a)(3), designated existing provisions as par. (1), inserted “and to the limitation under paragraph (2)” after “for such purpose”, and added par. (2).