Technology-to-Market Initiative

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Infographic: The Sensor Suitcase is a turn-key hardware and software solution that non-experts can use to generate low or no-cost recommendations automatically on how to improve a building's operating costs, comfort and energy performance.
The Sensor Suitcase is a turn-key hardware and software solution that non-experts can use to generate low or no-cost recommendations automatically on how to improve a building's operating costs, comfort and energy performance.

What is the Technology-to-Market Initiative?

BTO’s Technology-to-Market (T2M) activities drive high impact, industry-relevant technologies from early stage R&D to private-sector offtake.

Many technologies developed in the lab never make it to the commercial world, failing to make it through the virtual chasm that separates applied research from market impact. American leadership in energy innovation is key to growing the domestic economy, creating jobs, and ensuring energy security. But underlying structural challenges continue to weaken the American innovation ecosystem, limiting the economic return on research and development (R&D) investments.

The T2M activities strengthens the innovation ecosystem. We are reimagining the pathway to market for competitive clean energy technologies by addressing two interrelated areas: market readiness and resource access. BTO’s Core National Labs play a critical role in working with the private sector to bring energy efficient technologies to market.

BTO Tech-to-Market Initiatives, Engagement & Projects

BTO leads the following Tech-to-Market activities:

  • JUMP into STEM: Leveraging the success of the online JUMP community, ORNL is partnering with NREL to advance university student skills in the STEM field and encourage early stage research in building energy efficiency. Winners of the JUMP into STEM challenges are eligible to win up to six paid internships at ORNL or NREL.
  • IMPEL: Incubating Market-Propelled Entrepreneurial-mindset at the Labs’ (IMPEL’s) vision is to integrate market-oriented skillsets with the advanced scientific thinking at the national labs in order to focus early stage building technologies R&D on industry gaps, and catalyze it towards private sector engagement and impact. 

BTO is engaged in the following Tech-to-Market activities:

  • DOE Energy I-Corps Program: The Energy I-Corps Program pairs teams of laboratory researchers with industry mentors for an intensive two-month training where the researchers define technology value propositions, conduct customer discovery interviews, and develop viable market pathways for their technologies. Researchers return to the lab with a framework for industry engagement to guide future research and inform a culture of market awareness within the labs. In this way, Energy I-Corps is ensuring DOE investment in the national labs is maintaining and strengthening U.S. competitiveness long-term.
  • DOE Office of Technology Transition’s Technology Commercialization Fund (TCF):  The TCF is a nearly $20 million funding opportunity that leverages the R&D funding in the applied energy programs to mature promising energy technologies with the potential for high impact.
  • EERE Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program:  EERE’s SBIR/STTR program is aligned with the federal Small Business Administration SBIR program and EERE’s mission to lead DOE efforts to develop and deliver market-driven solutions for energy-saving homes, buildings, and manufacturing; sustainable transportation; and renewable electricity generation.

The following projects can be found on BTO’s Projects Map by searching under ‘Funding Type’:

  • SBIR/STTR Projects
  • Small Business Vouchers (SBV) Projects
  • TCF Projects

BTO’s Energy I-Corps Teams to date include:

Other DOE and Government Resources

The information below is provided as a resource for interested stakeholders. BTO cannot support or fund all buildings-related technologies or projects. In these cases, the information below could be helpful and is tailored to focus on additional resources for those in the building energy sector. Each bullet point below represents a section of further resources. Click on each bullet to discover the lists of resources.

Disclaimer: This information is not comprehensive and is only updated periodically. By providing this information, DOE is not endorsing any of the below organizations or programs.