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Program Seeks To Expedite Technology Development for First Responders

NCJ Number
Techbeat Dated: March 2016 Pages: 10-13
Date Published
March 2016
4 pages
This article describes the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology's (DHS/H&T's) pilot project, EMERGE Accelerator Program for Wearable Technology for First Responders, which provides seed capital in exchange for an investment stake, so as to encourage the development of wearable technologies for first responders.

Under this program, two accelerator organizations, one based in Dallas and the other in Chicago, were awarded funds to search for, screen, and identify early-stage companies to participate in the wearable technologies program. Approximately 20 companies were selected to undergo training by the accelerator organizations. This process resulted in the holding of a demonstration day held in San Francisco in September 2015. This consisted of entrepreneurs pitching their concept and prototype products to potential investors. The focus was on how proposed products could be used to assist first responders in their work. First responders participated and offered comments on the concepts presented. Some of the small businesses involved may have been working on technologies for a different purpose until faced with the incentive to focus on how the technology could aid the work of first responders. Some examples of technology showcased are technology embedded in a glove that allows users to remotely control devices, a voice-controlled wearable device designed for those who are sight or hearing impaired, and an automatic injury detection system.

Date Published: March 1, 2016