The NSIN Propel Accelerator program will create a sustained center of gravity for the Department of Defense(DoD) innovation community in the Mid-Atlantic Region.

The National Security Innovation Network (NSIN) announced a new partnership with Decisive Point, a venture capital firm focused on technology for government, public safety, and defense, and Newlab, an innovation lab located in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, to deliver a one of a kind national security accelerator. The NSIN Propel Accelerator program will create a sustained center of gravity for the Department of Defense(DoD) innovation community in the Mid-Atlantic Region.

The partners will work closely with NSIN’s DoD customer, the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Information Directorate, located in Rome, New York, to recruit and accelerate emerging companies new to the defense space with solutions that can be adapted to fill critical unmet needs – both for AFRL and the wider DoD community. AFRL’s Information Directorate is the premier research organization for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4I) and Cyber technologies.

Selected startup companies will participate in the NSIN Propel Accelerator, a 3-to 4-month program that will create alignment between government customers, end-users, and emerging technology ventures. The program will guide startups through a process to build and pilot technologies designed to meet DoD and commercial market needs, de-risk proofs-of-concept in field environments and prepare teams for follow-on procurement opportunities.

“Accelerating startups and improving their ability to contract with the DoD is important to solving national security challenges. This program will also help build a sustainable innovation ecosystem in the Mid-Atlantic region. Decisive Point and Newlab are the right partners to help us achieve these goals,” said John Hrivnak, NSIN Propel Program Manager.

Startups will have access to non-dilutive funding and they will participate in a custom Defense-focused curriculum to accelerate their path to solution adoption. More importantly, participation in the Propel Accelerator will give startups direct access to DoD stakeholders to support the development and validation of their solutions.

COVID-19 conditions permitting, the program will include both virtual participation as well as in-person residency at Newlab’s 84,000 facility in the Brooklyn Navy Yard with access to specialized facilities and an existing ecosystem of advisors and investors, as well as government contracting strategy support to develop acquisition plans that satisfy DoD programmatic requirements and facilitate opportunities for prototype contracts to be awarded. At the end of the program, startups will be well-positioned not just for raising investment but also for further engagement with the DoD and winning contracts.

“We are proud to partner with NSIN and Newlab to establish a center of gravity for the development of emerging technologies for national security and public safety in New York’s historic Brooklyn Navy Yard,” said Ryan Benitez, Principal with Decisive Point. “The same buildings that produced the warships of the Second World War will once again deliver transformative technologies. This project will serve mission-driven founders and companies solving the big problems facing our communities and our country.”

The application for the Propel Accelerator will open in April 2021 and the program is planned for launch in June 2021. Additional details will be announced soon. To receive notifications sign up here.

About NSIN

The NSIN mission is to “build networks of innovators that generate new solutions to national security problems.” NSIN is headquartered in Arlington, VA, and has regional offices in 11 commercial innovation hubs throughout the United States. Through its headquarters, regional hubs, and embedded university partnerships, NSIN builds a national network of innovators and delivers programming that solves real-world, DoD problems through collaborative partnerships with non-traditional problem-solvers within the academic and early-stage venture communities.

About AFRL

The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) is the primary scientific research and development center for the Department of the Air Force. AFRL plays an integral role in leading the discovery, development and integration of affordable warfighting technologies for our air, space and cyberspace force. With a workforce of more than 11,000 across nine technology areas and 40 other operations across the globe, AFRL provides a diverse portfolio of science and technology ranging from fundamental to advanced research and technology development. For more information, visit:

About Decisive Point

Decisive Point is a venture capital firm focused on technology for government, public safety, and defense. Our mission is to support founders with the guts to try: the ones who look at challenges facing the country and our communities and see problems worth solving. We support our clients as they navigate the federal market and invest in those that deliver solutions to both commercial customers and the nation. For more information, visit

About Newlab

Newlab is a community of experts and innovators applying transformative technology to solve the world’s biggest challenges. Newlab membership and studios bring together entrepreneurs, engineers, inventors and industry leaders to create sustainable solutions and enterprises. Newlab employs technologies including robotics, AI and material science to transform what matters most—health, environment, media, cities, and infrastructure.