9 Comments

Summary:

Energy Secretary Steven Chu — the rockstar geek Nobel Prize winner — announced at the first ARPA-E summit on Tuesday that the Department of Energy will hand out $100 million in a third round of grants to early stage greentech startups through the ARPA-E program. Specifically […]

Energy Secretary Steven Chu — the rockstar geek Nobel Prize winner — announced at the first ARPA-E summit on Tuesday that the Department of Energy will hand out $100 million in a third round of grants to early stage greentech startups through the ARPA-E program. Specifically this round of grants will focus on energy efficiency technologies including grid storage, power converter technology, and building cooling technology.

The ARPA-E program, which plans to allocate a total of $400 million out of the stimulus funds to high risk green technologies, has already awarded a total of $151 million for 37 projects, and is in the process of awarding another $100 million for companies developing liquid transportation fuels, carbon capture technology, and batteries for transportation. The ARPA-E grants average $4 million each and are given to promising but high-risk startups.

Once this third round of funding is awarded the ARPA-E program will have spent a little over $350 million, and will have around $50 million of the pot left to dole out (it’s not clear if this is the last round of funds or not, but I’ll update when I know more). After that the program will have to find a new set of funds to keep ARPA-E funded.

ARPA-E Director Arun Majumdar said at the summit this morning that the ARPA-E program identified its specific areas of funding by discussing what sectors need innovation in a “pull and push” manner. What energy technologies are researchers eagerly developing and what technologies are sorely needed, asked Majumdar.

We’re particularly excited to see that ARPA-E is focusing on various energy efficiency innovation, and looking at areas that are under funded. The DOE describes its goals for funding power grid storage innovation — or Grid-Scale Rampable Intermittent Dispatchable Storage (GRIDS) — as focusing on “developing energy storage technologies to balance the short-duration variability in renewable generation.” ARPA-E is looking at two areas of grid storage: “proof of concept storage component projects focused on validating new, over-the-horizon electrical energy storage concepts,” and “advanced system prototypes that address critical shortcomings of existing grid-scale energy storage technologies.”

Power converter technology also isn’t exactly a sexy technology, and the DOE says it will use some of the grants to focus on finding materials to develop new “soft magnetics, high voltage switches, and reliable, high-density charge storage,” which will deliver better performance while offering reductions in cost. In particular the DOE is looking for chip-scale power converters for solid-state lighting, micro-inverters for solar PV, and “single-chip power supplies for computers.”

Interested entrepreneurs, don’t forget that these grants are very competitive. Only 1 percent of the initial round of applicants received funds (37 out of 3700). The ARPA-E summit today is chock full of all the companies that didn’t win those initial funds.

Related GigaOM Pro Research (sub required):

You’re subscribed! If you like, you can update your settings

  1. 7 Cutting-Edge Energy Ideas That Didn’t Get ARPA-E Funding (Yet) Tuesday, March 2, 2010

    [...] at the Department of Energy’s first ARPA-E Summit, which was created around the $400 million in grants that the DOE is giving out to early-stage [...]

  2. Friday Morning Green Numbers round-up 03/05/2010 — GreenMonk: the blog Friday, March 5, 2010

    [...] ARPA-E Third Round: $100M for Grid Storage, Power Converters, Building Cooling [...]

  3. Friday Morning Green Numbers round-up 03/05/2010 Friday, March 5, 2010

    [...] ARPA-E Third Round: $100M for Grid Storage, Power Converters, Building Cooling [...]

  4. From Recession to Recovery: Cleantech Companies Navigating Shifting Economy Tuesday, March 9, 2010

    [...] may disappoint investors and sour the market for other green IPOs. Stimulus programs, such as the new round of ARPA-E funding announced last week, also are shifting the financing landscape, leading to new tactics as companies try to leverage [...]

  5. These technologies will surely help us save money from less energy consumption. Though these are expensive, there are actually so many energy conservation products already available in the market. Like for example, an best alternative for the building’s cooling system is the use of window tint. Window tints balance the room temperature making it cooler. While most window films are for reducing solar heat gain in the summer, low-e films both block summer heat and improve winter heat retention. Learn more about window tints at http://www.TintBuyer.com

  6. Excerpted: Cutting-Edge Energy Technologies from ARPA « Hypios – Thinking Tuesday, March 9, 2010

    [...] million in stimulus funds to promising green start-ups.  US Energy Secretary Steven Chu, “the rockstar geek Nobel Prize winner,” announced at the first ARPA-E summit on Tuesday that the Department of Energy will hand out [...]

  7. 7 Cutting-Edge Energy Ideas That Didn’t Get ARPA-E Funding (Yet) | Tech News, Reviews, Business, Health News and More Sunday, March 21, 2010

    [...] at the Department of Energy’s first ARPA-E Summit, which was created around the $400 million in grants that the DOE is giving out to early-stage [...]

  8. US Dept. of Energy Gives Disruptive Energy Projects $100M More in Stimulus Funds « LEDinsider – discussion on energy efficient lighting and Wednesday, March 24, 2010

    [...] storage solutions and more — although only 37 recipients were selected out of a pool of 3,700, as Earth2Tech points out. Its second round, also $100 million, narrowed this field, funding biofuel development, carbon [...]

  9. Energy efficient programs will really help people and the environment to conserve our energy in its simplest form. As an additional aspect of helping one could also use house materials as part of their energy efficiency improvements which can also help in the conservation of energy and electricity. One example of this type of products are window tints which can be commonly found in our home windows and car glasses. These window tints can block summer heat and improve winter heat retention. To know more about this kind of materials, visit http://www.Tintbuyer.com.

Comments have been disabled for this post