The Technology Initiative Screening Branch (TISO) is the branch of the Future Technology Office (FTO) that
assesses the suitability of new technologies to support the mission of the
Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory (MCWL). In order to ensure a legal, fair, and
consistent process, only those technologies that are vetted through the TISO
will be considered by MCWL for inclusion into its experimentation plan and/or
for further development.
How do I submit a proposal
Each fiscal year MCWL announces its capability interest areas in
the Office of Naval Research (ONR) Long Range Broad Agency Announcement (BAA)
posted on the Internet, http://www.onr.navy.mil/contracts-grants/funding-opportunities/broad-agency-announcements.aspx . These interest areas are intentionally broad
in order to allow flexibility in the technological capabilities MCWL
considers. If you or your organization
have a technology you believe is responsive to the BAA then follow the
directions in the BAA to submit a White Paper to the TISO. Be sure to read ALL information on this page
before you submit your White Paper as it contains important details regarding
its suitability for submission, as well as information that will answer most
questions about what happens after submission.
What happens after I
submit a White Paper?
Once a White Paper is received, it's reviewed by MCWL's technical
staff for its overall suitability for experimentation or continued
development. If this precursory look
deems the technology potentially suitable, the TISO will likely request
additional information, invite the submitter to come brief the proposed
capability, or request to visit the submitter at his or her location if
advantageous to both parties. At this
point the TISO may then recommend the capability be included into the formal
What is the formal
MCWL utilizes the services provided by the Army Research
Development Center under an "Other Transaction Authority". This is a vehicle that serves to identify
organizations with similar capabilities (if any) as the one proposed in order
to expedite the contracting process. The
one(s) that are best suited for MCWL experimentation are then down selected and
given a funding prioritization. If the
proposal is ranked high enough in the prioritization then funding is approved
and the submitter will be contacted with contract specifics.
How long will it be before
I hear back after I submit a White Paper?
The TISO strives to provide a response to White Paper submittals
within 2 weeks. Because all papers are
provided a quality review, responses may be delayed and are highly dependent on
the travel schedules of TISO personnel.
If you do not receive a response after 3 weeks then submitters are
welcomed to send a follow-on status inquiry.
What criteria does MCWL
use to determine whether a proposal will be considered?
Suitability of a technology for MCWL experimentation is based on
many factors to include; responsiveness to the BAA, maturity of the capability,
relative impact/value of the capability to the Marine Corps, synchronization to
experimentation schedule, total lifecycle cost of the capability were it to be
a program, existence or absence of other similar efforts within DoD and
industry, and cost. Selection of a
technology is also highly dependent on its importance relative to other
technologies that are already being worked.
What can I expect if MCWL
wants to experiment with or assist in further developing my technology?
It's important to understand that MCWL does not
"procure" material for the Marine Corps. However, it assists those organizations that
do so by helping to establish Marine Corps requirements through technology
demonstrations, assessments, and experimentation. MCWL, therefore, only obtains sufficient
quantities of equipment and systems to meet this objective. Depending on the maturity of the technology,
MCWL typically engages in 2-4 year agreements with performers that consist of a
combination of actions such as development, testing, assessment,
demonstrations, and experimentation.
Following favorable acceptance of a new capability, organizations such
as Marine Corps Systems Command and PEO Land Systems may begin the formal
procurement process by announcing its intent to procure this type of
If MCWL determines my
proposal is not suitable to its mission, does that mean it has no value to the
Certainly not. MCWL's
mission is focused and there're many reasons it may determine a proposal is not
suitable for it to pursue. Innovators
are highly encouraged to seek other organizations in the Department of the Navy
and Marine Corps, as well as other Services and Department of Defense
organizations to consider their ideas.
In many cases, MCWL is able to help facilitate meetings with other
How mature should my
technology be for MCWL to consider it?
Because MCWL's primary focus is experimentation, it requires
technologies it experiments with to be at a Technical Readiness Level (TRL)
(link to TRL chart) typically at least TRL 5.
Additionally, because the government buys complete systems and not
subsystems, innovators that have developed improved components need to submit
White Papers that present a complete system.
For example, while a lighter, more powerful and more efficient engine is
of interest, the proposer should consider partnering with an existing vehicle
provider as opposed to submitting the proposal to MCWL.
Can organizations keep the
intellectual property developed under MCWL contract?
Yes! In most cases, the
intellectual property obtained under MCWL funded initiatives is the property of
the performer and can be used to compete for any follow-on contracts.
Can I meet with the TISO
to present my technology?
Yes. The TISO regularly
meets with vendors to gain a fuller understanding of their technology
proposals. However, due to the large
volume of submitted proposals, and to ensure fairness to all submitters, the
TISO relies on the information in the White Papers to determine which vendors
in which it will meet.
Can I provide additional
Vendors can submit as much material as needed to impart a
fundamental understanding of their proposed capability, to include sufficient
technical information, but should do so as concisely as possible to minimize
the time required to review it. Due to
bandwidth constrictions, files cannot exceed 3MB or the mail will not be
If you've read this page and the ONR Long Range BAA and still
have a question then please e-mail the TISO at Futures_Directorate_FTO@usmc.mil.