The U.S. Department of Energy says it will fund research projects by 104 small businesses in the U.S. to develop energy-related technologies for market. The grants, made under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, total $102 million.
The projects cover technologies applying to energy efficiency, particularly for industrial sites and data centers, as well as renewable energy sources, such as biofuels, wind, solar, and fuel cells. Some of the grants support R&D on nuclear technologies, while a few grants support research into carbon capture.
SBIR and STTR grants are made by research-granting federal agencies that set aside a portion of their R&D portfolios for U.S. companies with less than 500 employees, where the principal researcher is employed by the company. STTR grants are given to companies that partner with not-for-profit entities, such as universities or research institutes.
The grants announced by the Energy Department will go to companies that have already shown the technical and commercial feasibility of their technologies in earlier (“phase 1″) projects. These phase 2 awards will support further development of the technologies to the commercialization stage. Funding amounts range as high as $1 million and support two years of work.
In addition to Department of Energy, the departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Health and Human Services (HHS), Homeland Security, and Transportation award SBIR grants, as well as Environmental Protection Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and National Science Foundation. STTR grants are awarded by the Defense, Energy, and HHS departments as well as NASA and National Science Foundation.
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Photo: Andrew Magill/Flickr
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