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Naval Force Health Protection

The aim of the Naval Force Health Protection program is to research and develop innovative capabilities to protect the warfighter, reduce injury risk and improve combat casualty care while also optimizing performance. The program seeks basic and applied research in neuroscience, bioengineering, biophysics, bio-nano-technology, autonomy and material science to understand the underlying mechanisms of injury and repair, which can be applied broadly to ensure Naval Force Health Protection and Readiness.

Research Concentration Areas

  • Sub-cellular to organismal computational modeling and physics-based properties of biological soft materials to enhance bio-digital engineering 
  • Advancing creation of the Human Digital Twin to improve human-machine interfaces with a focus on personal protective equipment and air-sea platform systems
  • Simulation and experimentation to identify mechanisms of and protect against traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Combat casualty care technologies for use in pre-hospital environments
  • Medical autonomy for use in casualty care and evacuation
  • Integrate physiological and environmental sensors into highly protective helmet systems to hyper-enable the warfighter
  • Enhance algorithms to better care for the physiological, psychological, and physical states of the Warfighter

Research Challenges and Opportunities

  • Basic and applied research to understand the mechanisms of injury and repair from damage and infection to human tissues during naval operations, such as protective measures against microbial insult within the littoral zone

  • Enable improved warfighter operational readiness through investigation of physiological parameters causing functional limitations, and develop strategies to increase and optimize warfighter capabilities

  • Novel therapeutic approaches to wounds using nano-particles

  • Low-power, energetic processes to establish cellular injury limits and enhance repair (e.g., photonics and ionized plasma)

  • Enhance and optimize understanding of cellular, molecular and nanoscale response in traumatic brain injury (TBI) to reduce risk and promote warfighter health, enable defensive actions and better collect/analyze data for decision making about exposure limits during training and operations

  • Creation of a helmet system with sensors, computational processing, integrated visuals/haptic feedback, and use additive manufacturing for lightweight structures to increase protection, situational awareness and warfighter endurance

  • Basic and applied research to understand the effects of high-rate dynamics on soft biological and composite materials

  • Basic and applied research to develop human digital twin, integrating computational modeling, body-worn sensor data to inform injury-risk prediction, enhance design of protective equipment and platforms, and establish safe parameters for casualty transport

  • Research to develop autonomous medical systems to provide continuous care in an integrated evacuation chain with reduced manpower in support of naval expeditionary warfare (e.g. closed-loop control resuscitation algorithms, optimized evacuation systems, localization and triage of personnel in water)


How to Submit

For detailed application and submission information for this research topic, please refer to our broad agency announcement (BAA) No. N00014-22-S-B001.

Contracts: All white papers and full proposals for contracts must be submitted through FedConnect; instructions are included in the BAA.

Grants: All white papers for grants must be submitted through FedConnect, and full proposals for grants must be submitted through; instructions are included in the BAA.


Bentley, Timothy Dr.
Program Officer
Code 342