Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) Competition: Generation-after-next Wearable Technologies

Closing Date: 25/08/2022

A DASA competition seeking wearable biocompatible technologies and innovations that move beyond the measurement of physical parameters, and instead towards the capability to measure data present in the individual’s body fluids.

The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) is part of the UK Government’s Ministry of Defence. The Accelerator helps public and private innovators develop their ideas into exploitable products and services for defence and security customers, and experiments with novel methodology and innovative approaches to help accelerate the delivery of the best solutions.

DASA is running this competition with funding from the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) to support wearable biocompatible technologies and innovations that move beyond the measurement of physical parameters such as heart rate, and instead towards the capability to measure data present in the individual’s body fluids, such as blood, sweat, tears, saliva and tissue fluids.

The aim of the competition is to:

  • Obtain credible evidence that generation-after-next wearable technologies have the potential to protect the health and wellbeing of future Defence and Security staff.
  • Overcome critical technical challenges to enable exploitation of novel wearable technologies.
  • Find novel technology developments to provide relevant measures that inform critical decision making in maintaining the health and wellbeing of Defence and Security staff.

The competition will focus on key technologies including devices/assay systems, semi-implantable and fully implantable devices, studies and sensor systems, and any technology that provides robust measures of biomarkers.

Submitted proposals should choose to target one or more of the below challenge areas:

  • Challenge 1: Biocompatibility, future tolerability of platforms for human use and maintenance of performance of sensor capabilities over periods of hours and potentially days depending on the target biomarker and scenario of use.
  • Challenge 2: The ability to measure several types of analyte (small molecules to larger protein targets) in a continuous assay format. This challenge area will also examine adaptability and flexibility of assays to integration of new biomarker panels as they emerge from human science research studies.
  • Challenge 3: Assessment of the applicability of accessible bodily fluids to measurement of particular biomolecules, ie studies to show presence of key biomarkers, with relevance to associated pathology, in particular sample types and indicate exploitability of these platforms in defence and security applications.

Innovators could choose to target one or all of the above challenge areas. Proof-of-concept assays using known measures, eg continuous glucose measurement, must provide a feasible mechanism/approach by which the same strategy could be readily applied to other biomolecules of interest to Defence and Security requirements. Approaches that would enable a broad spectrum of potential biomarkers to be targeted will be prioritised as will those that are ambitious in demonstrating performance over an extended timeframe.

It is possible that there will be a second phase of this competition with additional funding, which will seek to further develop promising solutions from Phase 1. Any further phases will be open to applications from all suppliers and not just those that submitted Phase 1 successful bids. Proposals in Phase 2 will potentially be for longer contract durations and a commensurate higher level of funding in comparison to the current Phase 1 call for proposals.

Funding body Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (Dstl)
Maximum value Discretionary
Reference ID S23969
Category Biotechnology and Biology
Engineering and Physical Sciences
Science and Technology
Fund or call Fund