Department of Energy is working to connect innovators with manufacturers
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Department of Energy (DOE) has announced the prize winners of the American Inventions Made Onshore (AIM Onshore) competition, a program designed to close the gap between American innovators who develop energy technologies and domestic manufacturers who produce them. The four winning organizations will receive $150,000 to deliver DOE’s Build4Scale training to energy hardware innovators and help them forge partnerships with domestic manufacturers.
Daniel Simmons, DOE Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, made the announcement at the 2018 MForesight National Summit in Washington, D.C., in June.
The DOE’s Build4Scale training, released earlier this year, equips American scientists and engineers with knowledge of basic manufacturing processes, an understanding of product design for manufacturing, and the know-how to make and evaluate manufacturing-related decisions.
“Energy innovation and manufacturing are a cornerstone of the U.S. economy,” said Simmons in a release from the DOE Advanced Manufacturing Office. “AIM Onshore will enhance the ability of energy technologies invented in America to be manufactured in America.”
After one year, the four winners will be evaluated, taking into account the number of contracts developed between innovators and domestic manufacturers, and the dollars unlocked by private stakeholders to continue the activities. A final AIM Onshore prize will be awarded to the two best performing organizations ($250,000 for first place; $100,000 for second place).
By requiring winners to demonstrate a sustainable revenue stream to continue providing the training, DOE is leveraging a small initial federal investment in an initiative that will ultimately be sustained by the private sector, according to the release.
Following are brief descriptions of the winners of the American Inventions Made Onshore (AIM Onshore) Prize Competition:
Innovation Works (IW), of, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, provides direct investment and strategic business services to southwestern Pennsylvania’s technology-based entrepreneurs, researchers, and small manufacturers. Innovation Works will develop a 15-week curriculum using the Build4Scale training that will complement its AlphaLab Gear, Scalable Innovation, and Energy Alliance Initiatives, bringing education and growth to southwestern Pennsylvania’s extensive manufacturing sector.
Chicago-based mHUB is a nonprofit incubator and Chicago’s first innovation center focused on physical product development and manufacturing. The incubator plans to implement a 12-month program to teach companies how to move through each stage of business development, providing a roadmap from idea to growth stage, the tools needed to complete each stage, and access to tailored resources. Participants will have access to its 11 prototyping laboratories, as well the mHUB technical team.
FuzeHub, located in Albany, New York, is a not-for-profit statewide organization that connects New York State’s small and mid-sized manufacturing companies to the resources, programs, and expertise for technology commercialization and business growth.
FuzeHub, in conjunction with Optimal Inc., will deliver Build4Scale training in three of New York State’s economic development regions: Southern Tier (Binghamton area), Western New York (Buffalo area), and Long Island. In each region, FuzeHub will deliver a full day of in-person training with the participation of regional Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) centers, contract manufacturers, and clean energy incubators.
ADL Ventures, located in San Francisco, specializes in developing and deploying emerging technology-enabled business solutions for legacy sector companies.
ADL Ventures’ Build4Scale program will be a three-phase approach delivered through an online platform that will be accessible to people across all geographies. As a complement to the reach of regional incubators, this virtual classroom model can easily fill gaps in geographic coverage. ADL Ventures will leverage its partnership ecosystem, spanning corporate, entrepreneurial, and technical communities to ensure that the impact of Build4Scale is realized across the
DOE’s Build4Scale training, developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in collaboration with industry, academia, and government and other resources, is available to the public for use and dissemination at Build4Scale.org.
The Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) supports early-stage research to advance innovation in U.S. manufacturing and promote American economic growth and energy security.