Energy Department Accepting Small Business Grant Applications for Low-Head Hydropower Turbines and MHK Monitoring Systems

November 26, 2014

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The Energy Department began accepting applications on November 24 for its FY 2015 Phase 1 grant topics, including two Water Power Program topics, under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. Under this funding opportunity, the Energy Department seeks applications for innovations in the following areas:

Innovative Small, Low-head Hydropower Turbines: Almost 40 gigawatts of the undeveloped hydropower resource potential in the United States may require turbine-generator units operating at "heads," the height at which the water falls, less than 25 feet. The Energy Department is seeking to advance hydropower technologies that can utilize this resource potential with its grant topic titled "Innovative Small, Low-head Hydropower Turbines." Applicants to this grant will propose innovative small hydraulic turbine or integrated small hydropower turbine-generator unit prototypes that can generate between 50 kilowatts and 5 megawatts of power at heads less than 25 feet.

Prognostic and Health Monitoring of MHK Devices: Commercial-scale marine and hydrokinetic (MHK) energy converters are large, often highly complex devices operating in a harsh marine environment, and servicing these devices at sea is a difficult and costly operation. As such, minimizing the maintenance and failure frequency of these devices has the potential to reduce the levelized cost of MHK energy. Under the topic "Prognostic and Health Monitoring of MHK Devices," the Energy Department seeks applications for innovative monitoring systems optimized for use in tidal, current, wave, and/or ocean thermal energy converters.

A mandatory letter of intent is due no later than December 15, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The submission deadline for full applications is February 3, 2015. Read the full Funding Opportunity Announcement on the SBIR/STTR's Funding Opportunity Announcements webpage.

For more information on water power research, development, testing, and deployment, see the Water Power Program's Research and Development webpage.