The U.S. Air Force has picked the Virginia-based National Security Technology Accelerator (NSTXL) non-profit to run the Space Enterprise Consortium (SpEC)–intended to be an incubator for military space innovations.

South Carolina-based Advanced Technology International (ATI) has managed SpEC since its establishment in November 2017, but space prototype demand has grown significantly so SMC decided to recompete the contract under a “SpEC Reloaded” effort and issued a solicitation in March (Defense Daily, Nov. 12).

NSTXL will be responsible for overseeing a possible $12 billion in military space contracts under SpEC over the next decade.

Funded through DoD Other Transaction Authority (OTA), SpEC has 441 members–355 of which are non-traditional, per U.S. Space Force Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC)–and has undertaken 80 prototype contracts worth $856 million.

NSTXL is to help consortium members’ work with the military on systems and manage such systems through prototyping and testing.

Tim Greeff, the CEO of NSTXL, said in a statement that SpEC “has been a very successful program thus far, and we look forward to taking it to next level to unlock more value for the U.S. military by engaging more non-traditional defense companies and bringing great innovation to the nascent Space Force.”

SMC said that it plans to award the new SpEC contract to NSTXL on Dec. 31, pending a 30-day congressional notification period.

“Since its inception in 2017, the SpEC program has seen significant success,” per SMC. “As a result of its streamlined acquisition authorities, SpEC has reduced contract award timelines by 36% compared to traditional methods.”

“The advantage of NSTXL is its new approach in rapid acquisition,” NSTXL said. “NSTXL’s best-in-class, agile acquisition platform is built to attract, retain and mentor emerging technology providers and help them successfully navigate the intricacies of the federal acquisition process. It then prepares them to compete for future space-related prototype projects.