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A Look Inside 1366 and Sun Catalytix, Two “Game-Changing” Innovation Projects

February 3, 2011 - 1:53pm

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Today, the Department of Energy highlighted six Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy projects that are at the forefront of American energy innovation. As President Obama said in his State of the Union address, this kind of innovation is critical to our economic prosperity. These six recipients received a combined $23.6 million in ARPA-E funding from the Recovery Act. In a little over a year, they have generated an additional $100 million in outside private capital investment. “This amount of private capital support indicates that the business community is hungry to invest in truly innovative solutions to the country’s energy challenges,” said Secretary Chu today. “These game-changing projects are going to ensure America’s energy, economic and environmental prosperity is secure.

To better understand what these projects are all about, we produced videos on two of the recipients being recognized today:

1366 Technologies is a small startup developing a new way to make silicon wafers – the key part in solar panels – for 80 percent less than the current cost. The company received $4 million investment from ARPA-E and since then has secured an additional $33.4 million from investors and interested customers.

Sun Catalytix, a start-up spun out of MIT, received $4 million from ARPA-E to develop their technologies for combining sunlight and water to provide affordable, highly distributed solar energy to the individual. They have since received an additional $9.5 million in venture capital funds.

To learn more about ARPA-e and some of their other game-changing projects, visit http://arpa-e.energy.gov/.

Andy Oare is a New Media Specialist with the Office of Public Affairs.

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