TYR Tactical

Innovation Showdown awards top prizes to Bounce Imaging, Veterans MFG and DetectaChem

COLLEGE STATION – Three companies won the top prizes in the “Under Fire Response Innovation Showdown,” an event which drew 20 innovative public safety technologies to College Station and Disaster City®. The winners were Bounce Imaging, Veterans MFG and DetectaChem. They were among the nine companies who made it to the final round in the two-day competition, and demonstrated their technologies for first responders at Disaster City.


The Product Development Center at the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) hosted the event, which invited 20 companies from 11 states and Switzerland to pitch their products before a panel of judges on March 8-9 and compete for cash prizes.

First place winner was Bounce Imaging of Buffalo, NY, which has developed a softball-sized, 360-degree camera that first responders could toss into a hostage situation or other hostile event to give them an inside view of the incident.


Veterans MFG of Katy, TX, has developed lightweight body armor and bullet-resistant products for first responders.

DetectaChem of Stafford, TX, has a product that detects trace amounts of a drug using a swab kit and a smartphone application, allowing responders to analyze a drug sample in the field.

In addition to the top prizes, three companies were awarded in-kind services by Esri, Paragon Innovations and Ricochet Manufacturing. The companies who won those awards are RSQ Systems, HAAS Alert and Veterans MFG.

Many company spokespersons said they were excited about the opportunity to showcase their product’s capabilities in front of potential users of the technology.

“It was an open forum for a wide variety of technologies,” said Caleb Holt, Manager of the Product Development Center. “The event focused on technologies that are targeted to provide first responders with a way to complete their tasks faster, more efficiently and/or safer for both the responders and citizens.”

He said the goals of the event were to expose first responders to emerging technologies that they could use in the real world to make their jobs easier and safer, to show companies the resources and facilities available at TEEX’s Disaster City, and to build the Product Development Center’s network of partners throughout the industry and first responder communities.

The next Under Fire event is being planned for March 2019.

About the TEEX Product Development Center

The Product Development Center, a center within the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service, helps manufacturers, product developers, inventors, entrepreneurs, and businesses move products from an idea or concept to the global marketplace. The Center serves as a gateway to the engineering expertise, experienced market analysts, laboratories, and real-world facilities of The Texas A&M University System in order to ensure a product or technology stays on the path to commercialization. Using the proven process of THINK | BUILD | SELL, the PDC helps companies develop methodologies, recruit subject-matter experts, assess partnerships, and test and evaluate their products. The Center also offers TEEX TESTED™, a third-party, unbiased testing and validation that a technology performs reliably in real-world conditions.  teexpdc.com

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