Silicon Valley Innovation Program

Silicon Valley Innovation Program

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) Silicon Valley Innovation Program (SVIP) is keeping pace with the innovation community to tackle the hardest problems faced by DHS and the Homeland Security Enterprise. SVIP expands DHS S&T’s reach to find new technologies that strengthen national security with the goal of reshaping how government, entrepreneurs and industry work together to find cutting-edge solutions. Based in California’s Silicon Valley, the program reaches out to innovation communities across the nation and around the world to harness the commercial R&D ecosystem for technologies with government applications and to co-invest in and accelerate technology transition-to-market.

We offer U.S. and international start-ups up to $800K in non dilutive funding over 24 months to carry out prototype projects and possibly transition successful projects to production.

Watch the Video

A video link for Silicon Valley  Innovation Program.  #startups welcome

Funding Mechanisms and Phases

Funding Mechanism

SVIP utilizes the “Innovation Other Transaction Solicitation” (OTS) — HSHQDC-16-R-B0005 (refer to document titled: “SVIP OTS Amendment_1_29_2020.pdf”) to engage with organizations that do not usually work with the government in order to carry out prototype projects and possibly transition successful projects to production. This engagement is intended to assist new companies so they have more opportunities to work with DHS through targeted non-dilutive funding and provide opportunities for operational testing and market access. Through SVIP, DHS intends to incentivize product developers to open the aperture of their development road maps to include homeland security solutions.

Program Phases
Up to 800K over 24 months, 3-4 tranches of non-dilutive funding, ($50-$200k /3-6 months); Phase 1 Proof of Concept Demo; Phase 2 Demo Pilot-ready Prototype; Phase 3	Functional and Red Team Testing; Phase 4 Pilot/Test in an Operational Environment; Phase 5: If DHS determines that additional work is required on a solution to meet mission needs, an SVIP performer may be invited to apply for a Phase 5 award. A Phase 5 is only applicable if DHS determines the solution may address additional use cases and operational scenarios. This Phase may result in a limited number of technology prototypes or licenses to test the prototype in multiple use cases and conditions and may be funded beyond the total $800K Phases 1–4 limits.

Eligibility Requirements

Blue circle logo with world map. While the Department’s “Other Transaction” authority extends to “non-traditional government contractors,” SVIP targets only a subset of those performers that meet the following requirements: Phase 1 applicants may be based in U.S. or internationally. Blue circle logo with the & sign. Phase 1 applicants must register for a Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS) number: Blue logo with three persons with less than 200.  Phase 1 applicants must have fewer than 200 employees or full-time equivalents (FTEs). Calculations for FTEs must account for and include affiliated businesses—such as parent companies and subsidiaries—that are either in or outside of the U.S. Flag with stars and stripes. Phase 1 applicants must not have been a party to any Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)-based contract and/or federally awarded grant or cooperative agreement with a combined total of more than $1,000,000 in the past 12 months, whether as a prime contractor or subcontractor.

For more details on eligibility, please read through the “How_To_Apply_and_FAQs for SVIP OTS 1_29_2020.pdf” document on “Innovation Other Transaction Solicitation” (OTS) — HSHQDC-16-R-B0005

Application Process

Is there a topic all of interest? Go to the Current Funding Opportunity section to review available topic calls. If there’s a call of interest: circle logo with shaking hands: attend the industry day event this is an opportunity to hear directly from DHS components and SVIP about the topic call and ask questions. Circle logo with file and down arrow: Download and review important documents. Visit the call’s solicitation portal by following the link. From the solicitation portal, download and read through all documents posted: Topic call solicitation; application template; application FAQ; Industry Day presentation (posted after the event); Q&A from Industry day (posted after the event).Ready to submit a compliant application? Only compliant applications will be reviewed by the government review panel. Be sure to follow all instructions in the application template and FAQ documents. We strongly encourage submitting applications a week before the deadline to ensure time for compliance review and submission updates. You will not have time to update your application after the deadline has passed.Then what happens? 01 Application Review: Following submission deadline, government reviews all compliant applications (~1-2 weeks). 02 Oral Pitches: The government will invite a subset of applicants to provide a 15-min pitch followed by 15-mins of Q&A (~2-3 weeks following application review). 03 Register early on If invited to pitch, register your entity on The portal is used by the government to provide payment to you – if you are selected for an award. Note the registration process does require some time.  04 Selection Decision: Within 24-48 hours of the pitch, the government will notify the applicants whether or not they’ve been selected for an award. 05 Award Process: From the time of selection, it takes the government 45-50 days to process the award.

Current Funding Opportunities

Prior to applying to a specific call, please review SVIP’s Innovation Other Transaction Solicitation (OTS) — HSHQDC-16-R-B0005. The OTS describes the overall program framework and eligibility criteria. Individual calls describing specific technical areas and use cases will be issued under the Innovation OTS in the future.

There are currently no funding opportunities. 



Blue circle logo with clipboard and checklist. Equity Free Performance-based contracts: Up to $800K in non-dilutive funding available. Blue circle logo with three people connected by lines. Network: Instant access to DHS public/private sector partnerships and the greater homeland security enterprise, a $444B market. Blue circle logo with silhouettes of three people. Mentorship: Learn from the best. We have a deep bench of government and private sector partners who can offer guidance and make introductions. Blue circle logo with checkmark. Market Validation: Find market fit through prototype testing and pilot opportunities. Blue circle logo with megaphone. Amplify Your Reach: Opportunity to demo your product to government, industry, and investors around the world. Blue circle logo with bag of money. Follow-on Funding: Our portfolio companies have received follow-on funding by venture capital investors.

Current Portfolio Companies

    Blockchain & Distributed Ledger Technologies-Release 1

    • Danube Tech (Vienna, Austria) will work on a Universal Issuer and Verifier project to integrate interoperability support for multiple credential data formats, blockchains, and standardized and open application programming interfaces into their existing decentralized identifier (DID) registrar. (Initial award September 2019) – Currently in Phase 2
    • Digital Bazaar (Blacksburg, Virginia) proposes to build out its digital credentialing and blockchain application solution to create a viable credentialing product for large organizations with the long-term goal of bringing its customized solution to market. (Initial award November 2019) – Currently in Phase 2
    • Mavennet Systems (Toronto, Canada) will apply the company’s expertise, gleaned from building a platform enabling real-time auditability of the natural gas trading markets in Canada to address CBP needs for cross-border oil import tracking. Mavennet’s solution will build a generic end-to-end platform that can be used for any type of commodity that includes automation and integrating application program interface, physical measurement and legacy system capabilities. (Initial award November 2019) – Currently in Phase 2
    • SecureKey Technologies (Toronto, Canada) will adapt the concepts and code associated with its Verified.Me commercial strength identity network solution that offers availability, disaster recovery, fraud prevention, monitoring and other essential operational controls to support Transportation Security Administration and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services needs around the issuance and validation of identity documents for travel and employment authorization. (Initial award November 2019) – Currently in Phase 2
    • Transmute Industries (Austin, Texas) will adapt Transmute ID, its core technology product that leverages centralized and decentralized identity infrastructures to secure individual agency identities and verifiable credentials to ensure that CBP has visibility into the provenance, traceability and regulatory compliance of raw material imports. (Initial award November 2019) – Currently in Phase 2

    Blockchain & Distributed Ledger Technologies-Release 2

    • MATTR (Auckland New Zealand): a woman-owned start-up is assisting USCIS to develop a capability to digitally issue and validate essential work and task licenses. (Initial Award September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1
    • Mavennet (Toronto, Canada): will be supporting CBP by improving the traceability of natural gas. Mavennet proposes to enhance their Neoflow platform to digitally trace natural gas supply chains between Canada and the US. (Initial Award September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1
    • Mesur IO (Chapel Hill, North Carolina):  will be developing a capability to enhance CBP’s visibility of food supply chains. The project aims to improve food safety through the international supply chain by enhancing visibility from farm to point of purchase. (Initial Award September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1
    • SecureKey (Toronto, Canada): will be developing an alternative identifier to the Social Security Number (SSN) to support PRIV’s SSN Collection and Use Reduction initiative. The project’s goal will be to implement a globally unique, meaningless, and verifiable identifier that will not divulge personally identifiable information or allow for cross tracking. (Initial Award September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1

    Energy Harvesting Fabrics

    • Protect the Force (Boston, Massachusetts) is developing a photovoltaic fiber that can be woven into a fabric matrix for integration into first responder gear. (Initial award August 2018) – Currently in Phase 2

    Enhancing CBP Airport Passenger Processing

    • iProov (London, England) will develop a capability to allow travelers to quickly transit remote border ports of entry by optionally utilizing their personal devices to report their entry and exit to CBP with a secure, privacy focused mobile application. (Initial award April 2018) – Currently in Phase 4
    • Kiana Analytics, Inc. (Sunnyvale, California) will develop a smartphone-based interview capability that includes the remote identity verification of travelers using a combination of biometric information and behavior/trend analysis from sensors available in remote ports of entry used by travelers. (Initial award February 2017) – Currently in Phase 4

    Enhancements to the Global Travel Assessment System 

    • Tamr (Cambridge, Massachusetts) will use their core human-guided, machine learning software to achieve schema mapping and entity resolution. (Initial award December 2016) Currently in Phase 5

    Financial Services Cyber Security Active Defense 

    • Heilig Defense, LLC (Arlington, Virginia) will develop the Memory Sentry solution, which provides runtime application protection against specific memory-safety vulnerabilities. Memory Sentry is a “pre-exploitation” protection tool that can disrupt an attacker’s ability to successfully exploit software vulnerabilities. (Initial award October 2017) – Currently in Phase 3

    High Fidelity Counting and Measuring of CBP Queues and Service Times at Ports of Entry

    • Quanergy (Sunnyvale, California) will develop a Light Detection- and Ranging-based capability that can detect and anonymously analyze the flow of queues through airport security and customs processing. (Initial award September 2018) Currently in Phase 2
    • CrowdVision USA Co (London, UK) will combine several commercially-ready measurement, analytics, and modeling technologies from several small innovative businesses, into a single solution to optimize the flow of passengers through airports. (Initial award September 2019) Currently in Phase 2

    Identity and Anti-Spoofing of Non-Person Entities

    • Plurilock (Victoria, BC) will design an Identity Management solution for non-person entities using behavioral and contextual data for multi-channel authentication. (Initial award July 2018) Currently in Phase 3

    Internet of Things (IoT) Security

    • Bastille Networks, Inc. (Atlanta, Georgia) will focus on identifying enterprise IoT protocols. (Initial award January 2017) – Currently in Phase 5
    • QED Secure Solutions LLC (Coppell, Texas) will develop a robust, vendor-agnostic solution for verifying and validating third-party firmware updates for IoT devices. (Initial award January 2017) – Completed Phase 4

    K9 Wearable Technologies

    • HaloLights LLC (Orlando, Florida) in conjunction with DHS S&T, will develop a canine wearable health monitoring device that leverages existing technology. The device will monitor and analyze vital signs and other health indicators of the CBP’s canine workforce. (Initial award September 2017) – Currently in Phase 3

    Language Translator

    • TranslateLive, LLC (Clearwater, FL) will enhance their Instant Language Assistant product with adaptations such as offline capability and auto language detection in a hand-held, waterproof, and floatable device. (Initial award in September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1
    • Kynamics (Mountain View, CA) proposes to build a portable, standalone system that automatically detects the spoken language and updates for fixes and feedback when an internet connection is available. (Initial award in September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1

    Maritime Object Tracking Technology

    • Kenautics, Inc. (Encinitas, CA) proposes to adapt their handheld Diver Navigation and Imaging System into a ruggedized buoy deployable from land, air, and sea. (Initial award in September 2020) – Currently in Phase 1
    • Morcom International, Inc.  (Chantilly, VA) Morcom's project proposes to augment their existing product, the Tracking Unit for Navigational Aid, to implement a system for clearly marking objects in water and enhancing capabilities to enable airdropping for use in different scenarios. (Initial award in February 2021)  Currently in Phase 1.

    Object Recognition and Adaptive Algorithms in Passenger Property Screening

    • Analytical AI (Birmingham, AL) will generate deep learning algorithms to develop an object identification engine that can rapidly and accurately detect common stream of commerce items. (Initial award February 2020)  – Currently in Phase 2
    • Cignal, LLC (Ashburn, VA) will enhance its working prototype and existing training workflow product to generate a high-volume and high-fidelity synthetic Computed Tomography data source for labeled Stream of Commerce baggage for seamless, unsupervised, and continuous AI model training. (Initial award May 2020) – Currently in Phase 1
    • Synthetik Applied Technologies (Austin, TX) will develop and train an artificial intelligence model with the potential to automatically detect multiple objects at the same time during the airport property screening process. (Initial award March 2020) – Completed Phase 2

    Real-Time Intelligent Traveler Wayfinding

    • Arup USA (New York City, New York) proposed to develop a Bluetooth-enabled wayfinding technology to increase the efficiency of processing international travelers through customs. (Initial award July 2018) Currently in Phase 3

    Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) Capabilities

    • Asymmetric Technologies (Columbus, Ohio) proposes to develop a platform-agnostic Secure UAS Flight Controller that improves the cybersecurity of commercial sUAS systems. This will reduce the risk of cyber attacks on the Department’s sUAS platforms by ensuring secure communication and control mechanisms with operators, secure surveillance telemetry streams and on-board hardware security to prevent unauthorized access of data. (Initial award March 2017) – Completed Phase 4
    • Echodyne (Bellevue, Washington) will leverage their new generation of ultra-low Cost, Size, Weight, and Power radar products based on its new Metamaterials Electronically Scanning Array architecture to support Border Patrol operations. (Initial award December 2016) – Completed Phase 4
    • Planck Aerosystems (San Diego, California) aims to build a fully autonomous, truck-based, search, surveillance and data delivery platform for DHS applications operated from a dash-mounted user interface, which delivers real-time video and object detection to drivers and passengers without the need for a dedicated pilot or extensive operator training. (Initial award March 2017) – Completed Phase 4


    For a comprehensive list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), please refer to the How to Apply and FAQs document on the OTS page.

    Is my company eligible to participate in the SVIP program?

    Answer: Your company must be considered a non-traditional Government performer and meet additional SVIP requirements to be considered for the program.  Please see the eligibility section in the most recent version of the SVIP Other Transaction Solicitation (OTS) on

    Are foreign owned firms eligible for the SVIP program?

    Answer: Yes, please see the previous question for eligibility requirements. Please note that award processing to non-U.S. entities may take longer than the 30–45-day window.

    Can you review my marketing material/product information and let me know if I should apply to the SVIP program?

    Answer: We cannot advise you on whether or not to apply to our program, as that is a business decision. Our advice is to read the call and other documentation associated with the call to make your decision. If you have questions that aren’t answered in call documentation, please send your questions via email to us at

    Can I discuss my idea with you before I complete my application?

    Answer: We are prohibited from discussing potential content of your application. Our advice is to read the call and other documentation associated with the calls to make your decision. If you have questions that aren’t answered in the call documentation, please send your questions to us at

    Pertaining to the milestones identified, is DHS open to applications that skip ahead in phases, moving directly to the pilot/demo?

    Answer: No. Currently the program is structured to begin at Phase 1. However, depending on maturity of technology, in some instances, demos/pilots may occur in Phase 1.

    If I am a current portfolio company, can I still submit an application to a different topic call?

    Answer: Yes, however you still need to be considered an eligible company when applying to the new topic.

    When should I submit an application?

    Answer: We highly recommend you submit your application in advance of the deadline (about a week) to allow time for you to make updates to the application if deemed noncompliant. Once the deadline has passed, you will be unable to address compliance issues.

    What happens if an application is deemed non-compliant?

    Answer: Per the guidance in the OTS HSHQDC-16-R-B0005, if the application is deemed non-compliant, your application will be rejected, and you will receive an email notification listing the compliance issue. You may fix the issue and resubmit if the call is still open. Please see below for examples of non-compliant applications:

    • Total phase value proposed is greater than the “funding level assigned by phase” identified in the respective solicitation/call
    • Total number of pages submitted does not comply with the page count limitations identified in the respective solicitation/call
    • Using an incorrect or outdated application
    • The application is incomplete – Please ensure you complete every section even if you state “Not-applicable” (N/A)

    I submitted my application prior to the deadline, but DHS did not receive it in time, what do I do?

    Answer: Please forward the original email that is time stamped with a date and time prior to the call close date/time to  

    Will others in DHS have access to my information? Do they have Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs)?

    Answer: All personnel who are handling proprietary information are either federal employees covered by the Trade Secrets Act or have an active non-disclosure agreement with the U.S. government as part of their employment agreement/contract.

    There are no open technical calls, but I would still like to submit an application for my technology, what should I do?

    Answer: If there are no open technical calls, we cannot accept applications. You will need to wait for another open call that fits your technology. Please check the SVIP website for new open technical calls or join the SVIP mailing list.

    You may request to be added to the SVIP mailing list by emailing:

    You may also consider exploring other S&T programs such as: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program and Long-Range Broad Agency Announcement (LRBAA) program. Please visit the Work with Us webpage on to learn about other S&T funding opportunities.


    Press Releases and Media Advisories

    S&T Snapshots

    USST-SVIP Related Blogs


    For more information or to be added to our mailing list, email

    Was this page helpful?

    This page was not helpful because the content:
    Back to Top