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FastLane guide

Read this guide to help you submit a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) or Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I Proposal in FastLane. (A PDF version of this guide is also available for download).

Please contact the FastLane Help Desk (1-800-673-6188 or for IT system or ADA and 508 compliance-related questions (7:00 AM – 9:00 PM Eastern Time; Monday – Friday except federal holidays). SBIR and STTR program-related questions should be directed to

FastLane will not accept proposals after 5:00 PM submitter’s time on the submission window closing date. We encourage you to follow guidance from your program director about when and how to submit your proposal.

1. Proposal Overview

Were you invited to submit a proposal?

NSF SBIR/STTR Program Phase I applicants are now REQUIRED to submit a “Project Pitch” that outlines the project objectives, technical innovation and associated technical risks. Projects that seem to be a good fit will be officially INVITED to submit a full proposal.

Only SBIR/STTR proposals that have been invited will be reviewed by NSF. To learn more about the Project Pitch, please visit How It Works.

Read the SBIR/STTR Solicitation

The Phase I SBIR/STTR Solicitation explains what information should go in the proposal. The following steps will walk through the process of submitting a proposal to FastLane, one of NSF’s electronic proposal submission systems.

SBIR/STTR Proposals must be submitted to NSF via FastLane. The NSF’s proposal preparation and submission site is not currently available for SBIR and STTR proposal submissions but must be used to register for Fastlane.