On July 8, the U.S. Energy Department, during the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative’s Southeast Regional Summit, announced the national laboratories who will take the lead in implementing a new Small Businesses Vouchers Pilot. This initiative, part of the larger Lab Impact Initiative, is a public-private partnership that will connect nationwide clean energy entrepreneurs with top scientists, engineers, and world-class facilities at national laboratories. The program aims to leverage selected labs’ tremendous research and engineering capabilities to quicken the development of cutting edge clean energy technology.

Later this summer, the Department will launch the Small Business Central Assistance Platform so that businesses may exchange information with labs and apply to the program. Individual vouchers, ranging in value from $50,000 to $300,000, will be awarded at the end of three competition cycles held in 2015 and 2016. The DOE sees the vouchers as a way for businesses to initiate collaborative research projects or to access technical assistance with labs.

For more information, see the Energy Department’s release here. The following labs were selected to participate in the program:

  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee
  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, Colorado
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California
  • Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico and Livermore, California
  • Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA