NSIN Propel

Empowering early-stage ventures to tackle national security challenges
In partnership with the National Security Innovation Network (NSIN) and Decisive Point, NSIN Propel enables the development of next-generation applications of emerging dual-use technology for government and defense. As a center of gravity for the Department of Defense (DoD) innovation community in the Mid-Atlantic region, the program supports early-stage ventures with commercial applications to develop practical acquisitions knowledge and capacity necessary for success in the federal market.

NSIN Propel is collaborating with the Rome, New York-based Air Force Research Laboratory’s Information Directorate (AFRL)—the premier research organization for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4I) and Cyber technologies—to recruit companies new to the defense sector with technology solutions that can be adapted to address the needs of both the AFRL and the broader DoD community. The first cohort of early-stage ventures engaged in the program will deliver safety, resiliency, and agility to National Security initiatives across the focus areas described below.


NSIN Propel is open to strategic collaboration with corporations and investors focused on dual-use technologies and partnerships with startups. Get in touch to inquire about opportunities.
Inquire about partnership

Key Dates
Open Call Info Sessions
April 28 & May 13
Open Call deadline
May 19
Finalists notified
End of May
Startups selected
Startups in Program
Demo Day
Follow-on Support
Focus Areas

Leveraging sensing capabilities to augment the operational picture, increase situational awareness, inform planning and decision-making. Smart cities applications and technologies built specifically for urban environments are of high interest.


New mechanisms to establish reliable, fast, secure connectivity in dense urban environments and enable intelligence at the edge. Advances in 5G and applications in industrial automation and manufacturing are relevant.

Autonomous Systems

Automating dangerous or repetitive tasks, augmenting and extending human capability, enabling surrogate swarm operations, and anomaly detection. Developing user trust with explainability of autonomous decision making, and designing human-in-the-loop systems and related interfaces.

Data Fusion & Analytics

The above categories may include both hardware and software technologies. Underlying the topics will be a focus on data fusion and analytics to automate, train and customize systems that support, inform and enable human operators and decision makers.

About Decisive Point

Decisive Point is a venture capital firm focused on technology for government, public safety, and defense. Decisive Point’s mission is to support founders with the guts to try; the ones who look at challenges facing the country and their communities and see problems worth solving. Decisive Point supports their clients as they navigate the federal market and invest in those that deliver solutions to both commercial customers and the nation.

About NSIN

The NSIN mission is to “build networks of innovators that generate new solutions to national security problems.” NSIN is headquartered in Arlington, VA, and has regional offices in 11 commercial innovation hubs throughout the United States. Through its headquarters, regional hubs, and embedded university partnerships, NSIN builds a national network of innovators and delivers programming that solves real-world, DoD problems through collaborative partnerships with non-traditional problem-solvers within the academic and early-stage venture communities.