The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's Lab-Corps program today launched its second round of clean energy entrepreneurship trainings this week in Golden, Colorado. The $2.3 million pilot, started in 2014, is based on the National Science Foundation's successful Innovation Corps model. Lab-Corps aims to accelerate the transfer of clean energy technologies from our national laboratories to the marketplace by training and empowering national lab researchers to successfully transition their discoveries into high-impact, real world technologies in the private sector.  As a key part of President Obama's  Lab-to-Market Initiative, the Lab-Corps program leverages the scientific expertise and entrepreneurial spirit at our national labs to bring new lab technologies to market that advance American leadership in clean energy.

This week, fourteen different teams of researchers from seven DOE national laboratories began the seven-week Lab-Corps entrepreneurial bootcamp at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory for commercializing promising sustainable transportation, renewable power, and energy efficiency technologies. Through Lab-Corps' specialized technology accelerator and training curriculum, these lab-based teams will gain direct market feedback on their technologies and pursue the development of startup companies, industry partnerships, licensing agreements, and other business opportunities. The teams will also receive access to a suite of commercialization resources including technology validation and testing, facility access, techno-economic analysis, and other incubation services.

The 14 project teams participating in this round of training are (listed alphabetically by laboratory):

  • Argonne National Laboratory—Nanoheatblock
    • Efficient material for window upgrading
  • Argonne National Laboratory—Resin Water Electrodeionization
    • Process water upgrading
  • Argonne National Laboratory—Smart Change Adaptor
    • Advanced device for electric vehicle charging
  • Idaho National Laboratory—High-Moisture Pelleting Process
    • Biofeedstock processing
  • Idaho National Laboratory—Quake
    • Earthquake detection and analysis
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory—BioAlchemy
    • Enzyme screening for bioenergy applications
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory—Evodia
    • Enzymes for improved biochemical production
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory—Tough
    • Geothermal resource assessment system
  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory—Micro Miners
    • Rare earth metal recovery
  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory—Saline Solutions
    • Salt removal from water
  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory—Biolyst Renewables
    • Bio-based nylon
  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory—Solguard
    • Photovoltaic system safety device
  • Pacific Northwest National Laboratory—VOLTTRON
    • Controller for energy efficient buildings
  • Sandia National Laboratories—Polymer Membranes
    • Membranes for energy and water applications

The Lab-Corps pilot has already trained 14 innovative national lab teams, and if this pilot proves successful, this exciting new model will be considered for expansion across the Energy Department's whole national lab enterprise. Lab-Corps is a key part of the Energy Department's National Laboratory Impact Initiative which hosts a number of exciting new lab-based, tech-to-market programs designed to increase and enhance the private sector's relationships with our national labs, streamline industry's access to national lab capabilities, and demonstrate the value of lab-developed science and technology.

Stay tuned for updates on exciting new tech-to-market programs like the Small Business Vouchers pilot, which allows small clean energy businesses to access national lab equipment and expertise; our Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative's Technologist-in-Residence pilot, which pairs senior technical staff from the labs with counterparts from U.S. manufacturing companies; and the Advanced Manufacturing Office's Cyclotron Road program, where top entrepreneurial researchers can advance technologies until they can succeed beyond the research lab.

The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy accelerates development and deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and market-based solutions that strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality, and economic vitality.