DOE Awards Four SBIR/STTR Grants for SSL Technology Development

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science has awarded four Small
Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grants to advance solid-state lighting
(SSL) technology. The FY14 Release 2 Phase I awards will explore the
feasibility of proposed innovative concepts or technologies. The SBIR and Small
Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program aims to increase the small business
participation in federal R&D.

VoltServer, Inc. received SBIR/STTR Release 2 Phase 1 grant funding for
advancing in the use of low-cost, high efficiency SSL with integrated building
controls using a PET Power Distribution System. VoltServer’s proposed project
is to demonstrate a way to use a unique technology called “Packet Energy
Transfer” (PET) to embed the data signals directly onto the power distribution
channel to safely distribute high voltage direct current (DC) power in
buildings. According to the company’s proposal, eventual commercialization of
the technology could reduce SSL installed costs by 20–30%, seamlessly
integrate advanced building controls, and reduce power distribution and
conversion losses by a factor of three.

Innotec, Corp. also received the SBIR/STTR phase 1 grant for research into
integrating efficient SSL with advanced sensors, controls and connectivity.
Innotec proposal is to design and demonstrate a new, improved, and integrated
electronic film construction. This electronic film is to support the thermal
energy, and electrical current levels required for efficient SSL applications.
The company plans on combining printed films with injection over molding to
streamline the number of components and reduce assembly time, resulting in
lower production costs for pcLEDs, the elimination of PCBs in the manufacturing
process, and improved performance and increased design flexibility.

MoJo Labs Inc. received the grant to replace traditional light switches or
analog dimmers with a smart SSL wall dimmers equipped with photosensors, a
Bluetooth Low Energy (BTLE) RF communication, and a novel task-to-wall (TTW)
sensing and control technology that enables energy savings via daylighting. The
TTW architecture will be designed and managed by any personal device running
iOS, Android, or Windows 8. Using smart devices not only eliminates the cost to
design, manufacture, and support custom commissioning hardware, but will also
reduce adoption barriers by employing simple, no-cost UI’s. Leveraging the
ambient light sensing capability of smart devices (phones and tablets) could
enable nearly 33% lower product cost.

OLEDWorks LLC is the grant’s fourth recipient. OLEDWorks proposes using an
integrated, systematic design approach, to demonstrate a low-cost OLED panel
product with the thinness and light quality characteristic of OLEDs while
achieving high efficacy. For Phase I, OLED Works plans on producing a 4-inch
prototype OLED with directional control that can be applied to white light
panels with efficiency of greater than 45 lumens per watt. The company also
plans on devising a roadmap along with a roadmap for greater than 60 lumen per
watt OLEDs and color applications such as amber.

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