About Us

Technology Transition & Transfer / Office of Research and Technology Applications (ORTA)


The 59 MDW ORTA supports and enables medical researchers, clinicians, developers, and others to collaboratively conduct medical research and development (R&D) with businesses, academia, non-profit organizations, foundations, and other organizations, with the intent to address warfighter requirements, enhance military medical operations, and optimize patient outcomes for military and civilian populations.

The ORTA team maintains and continues to optimize their technology transfer (T2) processes to create a “one stop shop” for their customers. The optimized T2 “one-stop shop” is aimed to enable the establishment of new collaborative research and R&D partnerships (agreements), securing intellectual property (IP), establishing license agreements for IP commercialization, sharing resources with collaborators, spinning-in new medical advancements, and breakthroughs to support and enhance the Department of Defense (DoD) medical mission; leading to the spinning out of novel military-conducted medical research and military medical requirements to non-government medical R&D organizations.

Moreover, the team works with the City of San Antonio Economic Development Department, local businesses, academia, non-profit organizations, foundations, and other agencies to promote collaborations with military medical researchers, clinicians, and developers to address warfighter needs and create new, novel medical capabilities for military and civilian applications.

Contact Information

For questions about or assistance with establishing collaborative R&D agreements, technology transfer and transition activities, securing intellectual property for patenting and licensing, and/or working with academia, foundations, and industry, please email the 59 MDW ORTA team at: usaf.jbsa.59-mdw.mbx.59-mdw-st-orta@health.mil.

Submitting Technology for R&D Consideration

To submit a medical technology to the 59 MDW for R&D evaluation and consideration of collaborating  such as submitting a proposal to funding opportunities such as AFWERX Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, please email your proposal to the 59 MDW Tech Transition team at: Usaf.jbsa.59-mdw.mbx.59-mdw-ST@health.mil.

Please include in the subject line of your email the statement "New Medical Technology for R&D Collaboration Consideration" so that your proposal is properly routed and evaluated. In addition to the description of the medical technology/product to be developed, please include the project development plan, the Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs) at project start and finish, what the deliverables will be provided at the conclusion of the project, what the expected impact will be for improving/optimizing healthy outcomes if the technology is successfully developed, what the transition strategy is for fielding the medical product to the end users, who are the targeted end-users (military and civilian). Please include any supporting research studies that assess the technology under development. If at any time you are sharing proprietary information, please make sure it is properly marked so that it is protected. 

Note: to maximize likelihood of collaborating with the 59 MDW, we recommend pre-identifying possible end users and Technical Point Of Contacts (TPOCs) who are interested in supporting your project/using the finished medical product, especially AF military or government representatives for AFWERX funding opportunities. We recommend using every opportunity to solicit your technologies with military medical researchers, developers, leaders, and end users such as medical conferences, symposiums, industry days, and other events where military may be in attendance, presenting, and/or leading the event. 

Also, please email proposal packages several weeks before the funding opportunity window opens to allow time for the 59 MDW review, process, and respond to your request.    


The Office of Research and Technology Applications (ORTA) at the 59th Medical Wing Science and Technology (59 MDW/ST), Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center (WHASC) laboratory, Joint Base San Antonio (JBSA), Texas was established in 2017 to support the Wing’s rapidly expanding military medical research and development mission. As the mission increased, the 59 MDW ORTA grew to the current five-member team of highly dedicated, customer-centered, mission-focused team of professionals that support over 200 clinical researchers at over 70 San Antonio research sites.


The Department of Defense (DoD) Instruction 5535.08 Domestic Technology Transfer Program (22 Sep 2022) outlines the duties and responsibilities of the 59 MDW ORTA to support the military mission, and 15 USC §3710 outlines the R&D mission: “It is the responsibility of the Federal Government to ensure the full use of the results of the nation’s federal investment in Research and Development (R&D).”


"Enabling warfighters with optimized medical knowledge, technologies, and capabilities required to execute and accomplish the operational missions, save lives, and optimize health of service members."

Mission Statement

“Support medical research by facilitating collaboration and supporting the transfer and transition of medical technologies and knowledge to commercial and fielded capabilities.”


“Support the Department of Defense’s (DoD’s) National Defense Strategy (NDS) three Lines of Effort (LOE) to advance readiness, expand partnerships, and reform the way we do business to improve performance.”

The 59 MDW/ST ORTA operations are best understood by examining four distinct, yet interwoven  primary mission elements of technology transfer:  1) establishing and managing collaborative R&D agreements, 2) capturing and promoting military-developed Intellectual Property (IP) for licensing, 3) enabling co-development of military medical capabilities with small business via funded partnerships, and 4) engaging industry, academia, foundations, non-profits, and others to promote medical R&D collaborations that improve the military’s medical operations and benefit military and civilian patient outcomes.

Enabling Collaborative Medical R&D

The ORTA is responsible for assisting medical researchers with establishing new or modifying existing T2 agreements. Under the Defense Health Agency (DHA) construct, the 59 MDW commander delegated the approval (signature) authority to 59 MDW’s Chief Scientist by appointing her as the WHASC Laboratory Director.  This enables the 59 MDW ORTA to rapidly create, coordinate, establish, and execute collaborative research and development agreements such as Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRADAs), Educational Partnership Agreements (EPAs), Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs), and Patent Licensing Agreements (PLAs) that resulted from patents from Intellectual Property (IP) managed by the 59 MDW ORTA.

Invention Disclosures, Patents, and Licensing

The 59 MDW/ST ORTA provides services and support for Inventors and Innovators for evaluating and securing Intellectual Property (IP).  We encourage researchers to contact the ORTA if they believe they have developed an invention or knowledge product before publishing or presenting their work in a public forum so that appropriate steps can be taken to secure IP, and to inform us of any IP that might result from work done under a CRADA or other collaborative agreement. 

Working alongside the DHA legal team, the 59 MDW/ST ORTA supports preparation and filing of patent applications that align with the operational mission of establishing license agreements with industry partners for commercial use and product development.  IP also includes knowledge-based products such as protocols, processes, and training programs, which can also be licensed.

Furthermore, the 59 MDW/ST ORTA is available to answer IP related questions and to provide training on identifying and securing IP, the patenting process, and commercialization.  

To learn more, and to engage a technology transfer specialist, please contact the Office of Research and Technology Applications (ORTA) by emailing usaf.jbsa.59-mdw.mbx.59-mdw-st-orta@health.mil

Annual Report

As required by law, technology transfer metrics must be reported annually.  Here is the last annual report approved for public release.

Educational Links

Introduction to the Air Force’s Technology and Transfer Office
Technology Transfer
Primary T2 Mechanisms
Protecting IP
Recognizing an Invention




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