Press Contact: Erin Miller
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Space ISAC Among 9 Colorado Springs Organizations to Receive $941k NSF Engines Grant


The language for this Press Release comes courtesy of the U.S. National Science Foundation

Colorado Springs, CO, May 11, 2023 – Advancing Space Technologies/catalyst Campus For Technology And Innovation has been awarded $941,375 from the U.S. National Science Foundation’s Regional Innovation Engines, or NSF Engines, program. Advancing Space Technologies/catalyst Campus for Technology and Innovation is among the more than 40 unique teams to receive one of the first-ever NSF Engines Development Awards, which aim to help partners collaborate to create economic, societal and technological opportunities for their regions

The Resilient Space Infrastructures, Systems, and Economy (RISE) development award is focused on igniting technological innovation and workforce development to foster technology commercialization and technology transfer in space systems, space infrastructure, and cybersecurity for the space economy. The RISE development award aims to build the foundation for a dual-use innovation engine that will directly create new businesses, services and industries; support a diverse workforce; and enhance national security by collaborating with our federal agency partners through technology transfers and new services.

“Colorado Springs has a long history as a leader in space operations on a national and global scale, and this grant will help bring solutions for the challenges of tomorrow. The combined capabilities of the partners and resources will enable business growth and the development of cutting-edge technologies. Our community has rallied together, and this NSF grant will lay the groundwork for a cohesive, productive space economy” said Dawn Conley, Sr. Executive Director of Catalyst Campus and Principal Investigator for this grant.

The NSF Engines program is a transformational investment for the nation, ensuring the U.S. remains in the vanguard of competitiveness for decades to come.

“These NSF Engines Development Awards lay the foundation for emerging hubs of innovation and potential future NSF Engines,” said NSF Director Sethuraman Panchanathan. “These awardees are part of the fabric of NSF’s vision to create opportunities everywhere and enable innovation anywhere. They will build robust regional partnerships rooted in scientific and technological innovation in every part of our nation. Through these planning awards, NSF is seeding the future for in-place innovation in communities and to grow their regional economies through research and partnerships. This will unleash ideas, talent, pathways and resources to create vibrant innovation ecosystems all across our nation.”

Spanning across private, public, and nonprofit sectors each partner brings unique capabilities to inform and grow the space ecosystem in Southern Colorado. Through this development award, relationships among core partners will be formalized and anticipated partner growth will expand over the next two years.

Advancing Space Technologies (CO)/RISE core partners include:

  • Catalyst Campus for Technology and Innovation
  • Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC
  • Exponential Impact
  • National Cybersecurity Center
  • Pikes Peak State College
  • Space Foundation
  • Space Information Sharing and Analysis Center
  • S. Air Force Academy (USAFA)
  • University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS)

The awardees span a broad range of states and regions, reaching geographic areas that have not fully benefited from the technology boom of the past decades. These NSF Engines Development Awards will help organizations create connections and develop their local innovation ecosystems within two years to prepare strong proposals for becoming future NSF Engines, which will each have the opportunity to receive up to $160 million.

Launched by NSF’s new Directorate for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships and authorized by the “CHIPS and Science Act of 2022,” the NSF Engines program uniquely harnesses the nation’s science and technology research and development enterprise and regional-level resources. NSF Engines aspire to catalyze robust partnerships to positively impact regional economies, accelerate technology development, address societal challenges, advance national competitiveness and create local, high-wage jobs.


Dawn Conley at or 719-900-8335


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