Mr. Hendel began with a description of Boeing Corporation. Its largest segment is the Commercial Airplanes Organization, and next in order is the Integrated Defense Systems, created several years ago out of two divisions, Military Aircraft and Missiles, and Space and Communications. The company also has a “Phantom Works” group that performs a large part of the company’s research and development and that initiates engineering technology efforts and new programs. The company manufactures many defense-oriented systems, including military aircraft, transport aircraft, bombers, weapons, space and communications, large-scale, integrated future combat systems, and advanced technology projects. The company functions in many locations in the United States and abroad; the Phantom Works organization is headquartered in St. Louis with personnel in four or five other locations. Phantom Works develops such projects as advanced systems, prototyping, the unmanned combat aerial vehicle, and many exploratory concepts.
Boeing’s involvement in SBIR dates from the years 1991-1992, before the merger between Boeing and McDonnell-Douglas; since then the joint company’s SBIR activities have been merged as well. Most of Boeing’s interaction with small firms through SBIR has occurred in the Phantom Works (PW) program, which he said had done a good job of supporting them. Boeing personnel were currently working with small businesses on 27 SBIR contracts: 4 in Phase I, 22 in Phase II, and 1 in Phase III. He estimated that over the years, Boeing had worked with nearly 200 SBIR projects. Their interaction included support in the form of follow-on with the companies and tracking the development of their technology. He also participated in national SBIR conferences, such as the recent Navy Opportunity Forum in Reston, Virginia.
He said that Boeing’s management had recently decided to increase the emphasis on SBIR. One result of this increase in emphasis, he reported, is that he had been asked two months earlier to increase the time he spends on the program from 25 to 100 percent.
Boeing had developed its own SBIR procedures. One was to poll all of their technologists and researchers to review the SBIR topics at primarily four agencies—DoD, NASA, Homeland Security, and the National Science Foundation— and report on any that interested them. The office would then assemble a list of those projects and share the list with small businesses, both at conferences and by