NASA’s Technology Transfer Program says it’s opening up its patent portfolio and waiving the costs associated with using the patents.

When people think of NASA they think of space, Mars and shuttles. Well times are rough for the agency. At one time it use to have money coming in hand over fist. It was the darling of the country. It has not been that in a long time. So what does a strapped for cash agency do? The government agency has over the years come up with a great number of inventions. Remember Tang? They also came up with memory foam. So to generate some much needed cash NASA is opening up its patent portfolio to the masses. Best of all there will be no up-front payment required.

Once a startup has brought the product to market, NASA will start collecting a “standard net royalty fee,” but otherwise inventors will be able to use the patents however they like.

NASA Guidelines:

  • This offer is open only to companies formed with the express intent of commercializing the licensed NASA technology.
  • “No up-front payment” means NASA waives the initial licensing fees, and there are no minimum fees for the first three years.
  • Once the company starts selling a product, NASA will collect a standard net royalty fee. This money goes first to the inventor and then to maintaining the agency’s technology transfer activities and technology advancement.
  • This announcement applies only to non-exclusive licenses, which means other companies may apply for similar rights to use the technology for commercial purposes. However, NASA will consider further exclusivity if the start-up wishes to negotiate.
  • Companies entering into these licenses are bound by all requirements in federal licensing statutes and NASA policies, including development of a commercialization plan and reporting on efforts to achieve practical application.