Small Business & Industry

The Laboratory is interested in working with small businesses and industry partners to develop technologies that meet identified needs in national security. By harnessing the strengths of each partner, these collaborations can take several forms to enable innovative R&D.


Commercial Solutions Openings (CSO) inform small businesses and nontraditional defense contractors of opportunities to work with Lincoln Laboratory.


A Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) is made between Lincoln Laboratory and a private company to work on joint R&D projects addressing national security needs.


Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) are programs designed to fund and assist early-stage R&D performed by small companies.

Test Agreements

If you are ready to test or validate your technology but are unable to access test facilities in the private sector, consider entering into a test agreement that will allow your technology to be tested in Lincoln Laboratory’s state-of-the-art facilities.


Lincoln Laboratory conducts R&D to provide technological solutions for problems faced by Department of Defense organizations. We also undertake projects to address needs of nondefense U.S. agencies such as NASA or the Federal Aviation Administration. Our role is to develop technologies that are beyond the scope of the government’s in-house and contractor resources.

Academia & Not-for-Profits

We support collaborative research at universities across the United States and offer opportunities for partnering with academic and not-for-profit institutions.

Ways to Do Business with Lincoln Laboratory

The TVO can guide you through several options for partnering
  Licensing Sponsor-Directed Transfer CRADA SBIR/STTR CSO Test Agreements
Mechanism License or license option for patented and copyrighted technology via MIT Technology Licensing Office Transfer technology to federal contractor pursuant to government sponsor's direction Coordinate Cooperative R&D Agreement Negotiate Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer arrangements Utilize Commercial Solutions Openings whereby Lincoln Laboratory subcontracts parts of R&D to small companies when a research group needs them Arrange terms under which Lincoln Laboratory can perform testing in state-of-the-art facilities:
  • Autonomous Systems Development Facility
  • Microelectronics Laboratory
  • Optical Terminal Verification Testbed
  • RF Systems Test Facility
  • Sensorimotor Technology Realization in Immersive Virtual Environments Center (STRIVE)
Benefits Enables businesses to leverage innovative government-funded research in its products or services Enables the government and its contractors to utilize mature Lincoln Laboratory technology in the execution of their federal contracts Enables domestic small businesses to engage in federal R&D and to explore potential for commercialization Enables Lincoln Laboratory to contract with small businesses or nontraditional defense contractors in a fast, flexible, and collaborative manner Provides Lincoln Laboratory with access to new technology outside its typical purview; introduces business to a new customer who can advance the technology Enables businesses to access Lincoln Laboratory's state-of-the-art test facilities on a reimbursable basis
Invention Ownership MIT retains IP ownership; company gains access subject to terms of license agreement MIT retains IP ownership; partner gains access for government use only MIT retains IP for background R&D; partners each retain IP for their portion of R&D and share IP for jointly developed technology MIT retains IP for background R&D; partners each retain IP for their portion of R&D and share IP for jointly developed technology IP belongs to the provider of a product or invention All test data belong to the business partner; scope of work should not generate new IP
Costs Business pays licensing fees to MIT and assumes costs of implementing the technology in its products or services Government partners with their contractor(s) who implement the technology in national security systems and products Partner provides funding for work; Lincoln Laboratory can supply resources such as personnel and facilities Early prototyping funded by government; commercialization funded by business partners Under a negotiated contract, Lincoln Laboratory funds the product or service Testing is contracted on a reimbursable basis
Contact the TVO

[email protected]

General Contracting Information

We routinely work with vendors of all sizes for commercial acquisitions of equipment, material, services, and more.

Contracting information

NDA Information

If a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is required to begin discussions between Lincoln Laboratory and an outside organization, the Laboratory's Technology and Contracts Office (TCO) can facilitate this process. NDAs must be requested by a Laboratory employee who will be the primary recipient and/or discloser of the confidential information. For inquiries regarding NDAs, please contact TCO at (781) 981-5824.

Technology Transfer

A key component of Lincoln Laboratory’s mission as a federally funded research and development center is the transfer of its technology to the government and industry. This technology transfer ensures that the U.S. military has access to innovative technical advancements and strengthens U.S. business competitiveness in the world economy.