Federal program to award $12M for clean energy innovation

The i6 Green Challenge will fund six teams to move new green technologies from the lab to the marketplace.


The Obama administration announced the opening of the i6 Green Challenge, a program that will award a total of $12 million to six teams around the country with the most innovative ideas to drive technology commercialization and entrepreneurship. These projects should support a green innovation economy, increased U.S. competitiveness, and new jobs. One of the government agencies supporting this program is the Dept. of Energy (DOE), which will invest up to $2 million.

In order to be eligible for DOE funding, applicants will be required to demonstrate innovation in the areas of renewable energy, energy efficiency, or green building technology. The teams will establish or expand Proof of Concept Centers across the U.S.

These Proof of Concept Centers will support all aspects of the entrepreneurship process, from assisting with technology feasibility and business plan development, to providing access to early-stage capital and mentors to offer critical guidance to innovators. Centers allow emerging technologies to mature and demonstrate their market potential, making them more attractive to investors and helping entrepreneurs turn their idea or technology into a business.

"Initiatives like the i6 Green Challenge support the President's vision for out-innovating the rest of the world by moving great ideas from the lab to the marketplace to spur the development of 21st century jobs and industries," U.S. commerce secretary Gary Locke said. "We know that in the last 30 years, nearly all net new jobs were created by startups, and they will continue to play a critical role in our nation's economic prosperity."

The Federal Funding Opportunity notice and application information is available on the i6 Green webpage. The deadline to submit an application is May 26, 2011.

- Edited by Bettina Chang, Consulting-Specifying Engineerwww.csemag.com

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