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Booz Allen Hamilton is launching a new innovation center in DC

The Helix, located at 15th St. NW in DC, is a new hub for AI, robotics, 5G and other technologies developed by Booz Allen and its partner companies.

The Helix Center for Innovation. (Courtesy image by Booz Allen Hamilton)
Update: This article has been updated to clarify both the Helix's relationship to prior Booz Allen Hamilton innovation centers and Melissa Lazarofsky's status as the Helix's director. (11/16/22, 11:28 a.m.)

Following the success of its latest venture arm, tech giant Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH) today launched an innovation-focused space at its DC office.

Located on 15th Street NW, the Helix Center for Innovation is designed to be a collaborative and immersive space for tech demonstration in industries like defense, climate resilience and national security. VP and Solutions Innovation Lead Brian MacCarthy told that BAH created the space to accelerate the adoption of emerging tech across the entire company.

“The Helix brings together all the emerging technologies and innovations from across the firm to drive growth and showcase our transformative tech, innovative ecosystem and the collective ingenuity of our people that we bring to our federal clients’ missions to speed solutions,” MacCarthy said.

The 9,422 square foot space has over 30 simulations, product demonstrations and immersive environments. This includes an AI adoption studio with gamified interaction of the AI lifecycle; a Storytelling Rotunda, which features a floor-to-ceiling, 220-degree screen for displaying tech use cases; and a digital library of impact stories.  To start off, the space will include demonstrations on the Digital Battlespace, AI factory aiSSEMBLE and 5G gamification through BAH’s recently opened 5G lab.

“We like to refer to the Helix as a place that can help demonstrate ‘the art of the possible’ in how emerging technologies can be applied to the US government’s current and future challenges, as well as how we work to advance the overall tech capability of the United States,” said Melissa Lazarofsky, a senior associate at BAH and director of the center. “The mission of The Helix is to create a space for clients and partners to experience our future-forward discoveries, and for our strong team of tech experts to develop innovations as new critical mission challenges arise.”

Lazarofsky added that the new space is designed to be a collaborative environment for the technologists in the BAH network and hopes that it will inspire creative thought in the company’s work.

For right now, BAH said the center is just for its clients, investors and partner companies. But in the future, the company hopes to host panels, hackathons, fireside chats, demos and more events at the Helix. The center is the latest tech innovation move from BAH, which also opened its Bright Labs and Booz Allen Ventures this year. The venture arm recently invested in Latent AI, Synthetaic and Reveal Technology — all of whom will be present at the Helix.

The new center is a continuation of the prior Booz Allen Innovation Center, which had supported such projects as the SEED SPOT accelerator for social entrepreneurship, as well as the company’s other innovation centers. Account coordinator Alyssa Bauer of the public relations firm Stern Strategy Group, which counts BAH as a client, said that the Helix acts as a central point of confluence for the company’s innovation work.

“While the other centers act as working labs for technology integration and client work, the Helix is where employees and clients can come to better understand Booz Allen’s full suite of emerging technology capabilities and map out key challenges and solutions for the future of work, tech and government,” Bauer told via email.

Companies: Booz Allen Hamilton

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