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A Blubber or Dorsal Fin Piercing Tag Attachment System for Remotely-Deployed Cetacean Tags

Award Information
Agency: Department of Commerce
Branch: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Contract: 1305M219CNRMW0022
Agency Tracking Number: 18-2-115
Amount: $399,874.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: 8.2.4
Solicitation Number: NOAA-18-2
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2019
Award Year: 2019
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2019-06-27
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2022-06-23
Small Business Information
926 Unit A 79th Ave S.E.
Olympia, WA 98501
United States
DUNS: 048066630
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Unavailable
Principal Investigator
 Steve Jacobson
 CEO
 (360) 584-9303
 steve@americanbenchmark.com
Business Contact
 Steve  Jacobson
Title: CEO
Phone: (360) 584-9303
Email: steve@benchmarkmachine.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract

Animal-borne electronic instruments (tags) are critical tools for monitoring the behavior and ecology of cetaceans, providing data needed for managing their populations and mitigating the threats they face. Although remote-deployment of tags onto cetaceans that cannot be captured has provided valuable data, attachment durations have been frustratingly short and variable. Our Phase II goal is to develop an alternative tag attachment system for remote deployment of tags, onto small- to medium-sized cetaceans, that includes a fully-piercing implanted element with no sharp surfaces and a compliance closer to tissue than the current dart technology. It will also significantly decrease attachment element breakage risk. We propose a truly biocompatible tag attachment element that pierces only blubber or dorsal fin tissue, and a device for remote attachment of the system. We will build upon our Phase I results by refining our fully-piercing tag attachment system design, build prototypes of the full system, including implant elements, the connection to the external tag package, and the apparatus for remote deployment. Critically, in Phase II we will conduct rigorous testing and subsequent design iterations, ultimately allowing us to conclude Phase II with a prototype system that is ready for application to cetaceans, and successful commercialization.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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