What is an Other Transaction Agreement (OTA)?

An OTA is an acquisition method authorized under Title 10 USC § 2371. Congress authorized its use to accelerate the prototyping and deployment of technologies that address national security needs. OTAs also provide a great deal of flexibility compared to more traditional government contracts for both the Government and industry user to enable rapid acquisition of innovative technologies. For more information on OTAs, please click here: OTA.

Do I have to pay to view prototype project requests?

No. All prototype project requests will be publicly posted on the TReX website. Non-members will be able to download and review the full request and requirement. However, membership in TReX is required to submit a response to any request. For information on TReX membership, click here: Membership.

What is the difference between a traditional and nontraditional defense contractor for the purposes of the OTA?

The term "nontraditional defense contractor", with respect to a transaction authorized under section 2371(a) or 2371b of title 10, means an entity that is not currently performing and has not performed, for at least the one-year period preceding the solicitation of sources by the Department of Defense for the transaction, any contract or subcontract for the Department of Defense that is subject to full coverage under the cost accounting standards (CAS) prescribed pursuant to section 1502 of title 41 and the regulations implementing such section. For information on CAS and full CAS coverage, please see the Federal Acquisition Regulations Subpart 9903.2.

What is the difference between a traditional and nontraditional defense contractor for the purposes of the OTA, in clear words?

This generally means that a nontraditional contractor is one who has not performed significant development work (>$50M) for the Government in the previous year.

Why are small businesses considered “nontraditional”?

All contracts and subcontracts with small businesses are exempt from all CAS requirements (FAR 9903.201-1(b)(3)).

Can a traditional defense contractor be awarded projects under the OTA?

Yes. A traditional contractor may still receive project awards under the OTA given that at least one of the following conditions is met: 1) the traditional contractor includes one or more non-traditional contractors or nonprofit research institutions to perform a significant portion of the billable work; 2) the traditional contractor includes a nontraditional contractor with a technology that is critical to the success of the prototype; 3) the traditional contractor provides for a one-third cost share on the project.

What is cost sharing?

Cost sharing is a statutory requirement for an Other Transaction when a non-traditional contractor is not participating to a significant extent. Cost Sharing is when one-third of the total cost of the prototype project is to be provided by sources other than the Federal Government. Cost sharing can be represented as cash or in-kind value.

What is considered a “prototype”?

A prototype project can generally be described as a preliminary pilot, test, evaluation, demonstration, or agile development activity used to evaluate the technical or manufacturing feasibility or military utility of a particular technology, process, concept, end item, effect, or other discrete feature. Prototype projects may include systems, subsystems, components, materials, methodology, technology, or processes.

By way of illustration, a prototype project may involve: a proof of concept, a pilot, a novel application of commercial technologies for defense purposes; a creation, design, development, validation, demonstration of technical or operational utility; or combinations of the foregoing, related to a prototype.

Who comprises the selection team for any given solicitation through TReX?

The Government requirement sponsor will identify subject matter experts appropriate to conduct a fair and reasonable evaluation and provide selection recommendations to the Agreements Officer. NSTXL does not play a part in the selection of any vendors.

Is this vehicle open to program offices outside of PEO STRI, outside of the Army, and/or outside the U.S. Department of Defense?

Yes. The TReX Consortium is available to support any U.S. Government agency or program office with Modeling, Simulation, Training, and/or Readiness needs. Please contact the NSTXL Team for specific policies and instructions to let TReX support your organization’s mission. 

How often will TReX release prototype project requests?

TReX releases prototype project requests on demand, year-round. The requesting program offices will determine the frequency of the release of prototype project requests.

How long after the down-selection has been made will the contract be finalized and work be allowed to begin on the project?

Each project timeline differs in complexity and structure based on the requirement. However, the typical timeframe from prototype project request issuance to project agreement finalization is 60-90 days.

How are IP and data rights handled under the OTA?

Under an OTA, IP and Data Rights are negotiated on a project-by-project basis prior to final agreement. Consideration is given to existing IP and data. Commercial and proprietary IP and data developed prior to engagement on specific prototype efforts remain the sole property of the vendor.

What agreement is put into place between NSTXL (the Consortium Manager) and the selected performer(s) for a TReX opportunity?

Once a performer(s) has been selected based on the evaluation of white papers or solutions by the government, NSTXL will enter into a Performer Agreement with the selected performer(s). This takes approximately 3-5 business days after NSTXL has been notified of the selection by the government.


How do I become a member of TReX?

To join TReX, simply fill out the membership application: Membership Application. Your application will be reviewed for approval within 5-7 business days. Once approved, you will receive an email with instructions on how to submit payment for dues to begin your membership.

What are the terms of membership?

All members will need to agree to the TReX Principles of Engagement in the TReX Principles of Engagement.  Members will be able to review and acknowledge the Principles of Engagement during the membership application process.  Membership also requires completing the membership subscription process within 45 calendar days of membership application approval.

What is the cost to join?

TReX membership dues vary by entity type and size. TReX has two categories of membership: Corporate and Non-Corporate. The full dues schedule for each can be found here: Membership.  Membership requires completing the membership subscription process within 45 calendar days of membership application approval.

Are the Corporate dues levels based on total annual revenues or strictly within the corporation’s Modeling, Simulation and Training portfolio or some specific division?

Corporate dues are based on total annual revenues for that corporation from the previous year. For larger corporations, once a specific division of the main corporation joins TReX at the full membership cost, the whole corporation is considered a member. A separate business unit of a large corporation may join relative to that business unit’s revenue but the membership will only cover that business unit.

If I am part of a university system, does membership apply to all campus’ within the system or is it specific to the campus I am on?

University membership is done by campus. For example, a membership for the University of Texas at Austin covers the entire Austin campus. The University of Texas El Paso would require a separate membership for that campus.

If I join TReX, do I have access to other Consortiums managed by NSTXL?

Yes. NSTXL allows members of any one consortium it manages to apply for any and all opportunities posted through another NSTXL managed consortium and vice versa.

Can a large company benefit from being part of TReX, or is it only for nontraditional contractors?

Traditional defense contractors can benefit from engaging in TReX in a variety of ways. TReX encourages teaming agreements among members (traditional and non-traditional) to deliver solutions to the Warfighter. NSTXL events also offer traditional contractors opportunities to identify business opportunities with innovative technologies from start-ups, universities and incubators who engage in the various technology challenges and showcases.

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