Kinetica Labs, Inc. Awarded Competitive Grant from the NSF

Ann Arbor, MI, July 21, 2021 – Kinetica Labs, Inc. has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grant to conduct research and development (R&D) work on estimating the forces associated with human movement in the workplace.

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project is to prevent work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs), a leading cause of pain, suffering, and disability in the US workforce. The proposed technology estimates forces exerted on the human body and 3D motion solely by processing videos captured with a smartphone, and without needing to attach sensors to workers or objects. This technological advancement will provide safety professionals with a rapid, easy and affordable ergonomic risk assessment tool without hindering activity at job sites, improving outcomes for potential patients. Among many industries that suffer from WMSDs, immediate targets are manufacturing and distribution that have high injury rates.

Once a small business is awarded a Phase I SBIR/STTR grant (up to $256,000), it becomes eligible to apply for a Phase II (up to $1,000,000). Small businesses with Phase II funding are eligible to receive up to $500,000 in additional matching funds with qualifying third-party investment or sales.

About Kinetica Labs:  Ann Arbor-based Kinetica Labs is a pioneer in the development of sensing and simulation technology for occupational safety and health. Using artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, Kinetica Lab’s computer vision technology automates the subjective, manual process used in observation-based musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) risk assessments in the workplace. 

About the National Science Foundation's Small Business Programs: America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF awards $200 million annually to startups and small businesses, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. Startups working across almost all areas of science and technology can receive up to $2 million to support research and development (R&D), helping de-risk technology for commercial success. America’s Seed Fund is congressionally mandated through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $8.5 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering.