As part of yesterday’s $53 million announcement by U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) research and development projects, the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced selection of 106 new projects across 26 states, totaling nearly $21.3 million in funding.
Through the SBIR and STTR programs, EERE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) supports small business projects that catalyze research, development, and adoption of energy-related advanced manufacturing technologies and practices to drive U.S. energy productivity and economic competitiveness.
AMO projects were selected from the following subtopics:
- Atomic Precision for Energy Efficient and Clean Energy-related Microelectronics: Five projects that use atomically precise methods to make microelectronics, such as advanced transistors and phase change memories, more energy efficient and manufacturable.
- Sensors for Harsh and Corrosive Environments: Three projects focused on developing sensor technologies capable of monitoring pressure, temperature, composition, flow rates, and other variables in harsh and corrosive environments. Projects will focus on land-based and undersea industrial applications, such as oil, gas, and geothermal well drilling; power gas turbine temperature and flow rate measurement; and CO2 gas sequestration.
- Critical Materials Supply Chain Enabling Research: Five projects that strengthen the domestic critical materials supply chain by reducing the quantity of critical materials in energy technologies and establishing new domestic manufacturing capabilities, ranging from novel alloys to transformative recycling technologies.
- Water Desalination: Cost-Effective Energy Recovery for Modular Desalination Systems: Two projects developing energy recovery devices for small, modular desalination systems that have the potential to serve areas where energy and/or clean water is scarce, expensive, or challenging to obtain, such as islands, rural areas, and communities affected by a disaster.
AMO will also fund and manage projects under the following joint topics with other EERE technology offices:
- Novel Utilization Strategies for Ocean Plastic Waste: AMO will fund three projects with the Bioenergy Technologies Office for new technologies to convert waste plastics into products. These projects also support EERE’s Plastics Innovation Challenge which aims to reduce plastic waste in oceans and landfills and position the U.S as global leaders in advanced plastics recycling technologies and in the manufacture of new plastics that are recyclable by design.
- Advanced, Affordable Thermal Energy Storage: As part of this joint topic with the Building Technologies Office, AMO will fund a project under the manufacturing-focused subtopic to develop manufacturing processes for an innovative high temperature thermochemical energy storage technology that would increase industrial energy productivity. These projects also support EERE’s Energy Storage Grand Challenge which aims to create and sustain global leadership in energy storage utilization and exports, with a secure domestic manufacturing supply chain that does not depend on foreign sources of critical materials.
- Affordable, Grid-friendly, High-torque Direct-drive Generators: AMO will jointly fund two projects with the Water Power Technologies Office and the Wind Energy Technologies Office. Selectees will support scale-up of offshore wind turbines and marine and hydro water turbines to higher power with more compact sizes and weights through research and development on cost-effective power conversion and conditioning.
Small businesses play a major role in spurring innovation and creating jobs in the American economy. The SBIR and STTR programs were created by Congress to leverage small businesses to advance innovation at federal agencies. Information on the DOE SBIR and STTR programs is available on the Office of Science SBIR website. Additional information can be found on the EERE SBIR/STTR website.