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NASA Awards SBIR Grant to Ingenium

Published: Monday, February 16, 2009, 13:37:36 PM

Ingenium is pleased to announce that NASA has awarded a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to its Ingenium Technologies Division. The SBIR will allow Ingenium to develop a Voice to Text Language Translation (VTLT) system for use in aviation. In its main application, the VTLT increases communication effectiveness by translating voice and text transmissions between air traffic controllers and pilots who do not speak English as a first language.

VTLT inventor and Principal Investigator James Foskett MD is an avid pilot. “I conceived the VTLT concept after learning about several publicized Air Traffic Control (ATC) - pilot communication problems where English was not a native language for one or both people. My earlier linguistic background was paramount in determining a creative solution was possible,” says Foskett.

As part of the phase I SBIR, Ingenium will design a conceptual systems model of the human-technology interface. The model will assess the impact of independent variables affecting ATC/pilots and the ability to process information. A test will be developed that focuses on the impact of a second communication modality on task performance. Specifically, targeting performance improvement as a result of being able to both see text and hear speech in one’s native language.

From NASA’s website, “the SBIR program is a highly competitive, three-phase award system. It provides qualified small businesses with opportunities to propose unique ideas that meet specific research and development needs of the federal government. The criteria used to choose these winning proposals included technical merit and feasibility; experience, qualifications and facilities; effectiveness of the work plan; and commercial potential and feasibility.” Link to the NASA award announcement:

About Ingenium
Ingenium is a fast growing, privately held company headquartered in Rockford, Illinois. A leader in product design and analysis, testing, and manufacturing, Ingenium serves both the aerospace and industrial markets. Ingenium employs more than 200 people across three complimentary divisions. Located in three facilities, Ingenium’s engineering/research office complex is geographically convenient for customer access. The state-of-the-art manufacturing and testing facilities allow for our continued expansion and growth. For more information visit