Transition and innovation is the process of taking a technology from the developmental and prototype phase to production and deployment by the end user community. Transition success is achieved when research and development projects have evolved to the commercial market and/or have been inserted into government acquisition programs and can be easily and continuously obtained by the end users. The path from a research and development contract to transition success can be challenging, and it is the mission of the Technology Transition Program to help vendors overcome transition challenges to ensure the success for the contractor and the government customers. Planning for technology transition should start at the beginning of the contract to ensure that the program can transition successfully.
Transition and innovation is successful when contractors have executed a plan that produces full-scale capabilities to the hands of end users. Technology transition fails when programs end after prototype development and the technology is shelved or there is an inability for the end users to acquire the technology; this is a waste of significant resources by the contractor, the government, and the end user community.