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American-Made Challenges

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Open Voucher Call

Accelerating technology commercialization while connecting the public with U.S. Department of Energy National Laboratory facilities.
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$2,100,000
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Summary

Overview

A new kind of American-Made opportunity created by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Technology Transitions, the Technology Commercialization Fund (TCF) Open Voucher Call, will provide the public with opportunities to receive technical assistance from researchers at DOE National Laboratory facilities.   
 

The $2.1 million TCF Open Voucher Call will help facilitate the commercialization of scientific discoveries by helping to identify pathways by which technological breakthroughs can make their way to market. Although a variety of technologies will be considered, applicants are encouraged to leverage the capabilities and initiatives of the National Laboratories when developing their ideas so they can further develop their technology alongside the National Lab. 


Successful applicants will receive vouchers—valid for testing and validation, use of specialized equipment or software, simulation or modeling, consulting, or various other requests from a National Laboratory—which will ultimately allow them to advance their technologies. In this way, the call will foster a culture of curiosity and collaboration while bridging the gap between scientific expertise and public engagement.   


Through the TCF Open Voucher Call, DOE intends to inspire a new generation of researchers and instill a sense of shared responsibility for advancing knowledge and innovation within the scientific community.  

Open Voucher Call Structure 

This single-phase open voucher call will award up to 21 teams a voucher of up to $100,000 to be redeemed at one of these eight national laboratories:   

  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory   
  • Sandia National Laboratories   
  • Pacific Northwest National Laboratory   
  • Los Alamos National Laboratory   
  • Ames National Laboratory   
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory   
  • Argonne National Laboratory  
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory.   

See the National Laboratories Capabilities section of the Official Rules for more information on the types of technologies each laboratory can assist with or explore the Lab Partnering Service for further information.     


For each voucher awarded, winning teams will be required to provide a minimum cost share of $25,000 (either cash or in-kind). Teams will have one year to work with one National Laboratory of their choice and provide a progress report at the conclusion of their work.    


Guidelines

The competition is open only to private entities (for-profits and nonprofits); non-federal government entities such as states, counties, tribes, and municipalities; academic and research institutions; and individuals, subject to the requirements detailed in the official TCF Open Voucher Call rules.   

If you want to subscribe to updates, click the "Follow" button at the top of the page. If you have any questions, you may use the contact feature on the HeroX platform, or

Anyone interested in exploring the opportunity is encouraged to join an informational webinar on July 18 at 2 p.m. ET. 
https://nrel.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_FGj2mMfcRvusgdA23w5XKQ#/registration

Timeline
Updates2

Challenge Updates

Updates: Submission form is open, National Lab Capabilities List, Office Hours, and Application Support Checklist

June 7, 2024, 9:22 a.m. PDT by NREL Prize Moderator

There have been several updates that we would like to bring to your attention:

  1. The submission form is now active after being under construction. Prior to submitting please be sure to review the rules document. The rules document will outline the entire project including eligibility requirements and it has a template of the required technical assistance request form. Once you are prepared with your answers to the technical assistance request questions you can submit your submission via the submission tab.  
  2. The National Lab Capabilities list has been updated and is available via the resources page. Please review this document as it will have the most up to date version of the lab capabilities list. All the participating national laboratories have provided technology areas and capabilities they are able to support as it relates to this TCF Open Voucher Call. It is possible that DOE could select a voucher that does not fall within any of the areas of focus, but vouchers that do fall within these areas are most likely to be selected.
  3. Starting in July, each competitor will be eligible for two 15-minute application assistance calls with Ensemble. To ensure a smooth review process, please download and review the application assistance checklist before your call. Set up a meeting : Here (the link for office hours will also be available in the resources page). 
  4. There is now an application checklist that is available via the resources page. This document is to be used as a checklist to confirm your submission is complete and eligible for submission. 

 


New Opportunity: TCF Open Voucher Call Makes Vouchers Redeemable at DOE National Labs Widely Available

May 29, 2024, 12:51 p.m. PDT by NREL Prize Moderator

A new opportunity from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Technology Transitions (OTT) and the Technology Commercialization Fund (TCF) is making $100,000 in vouchers available to everyday innovators who could benefit from the help of national laboratories.  

The $2.1 million TCF Open Voucher Call was created to provide the public with opportunities to receive technical assistance from researchers at U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory facilities. Successful applicants will receive vouchers—valid for testing and validation, use of specialized equipment or software, simulation or modeling, consulting, or various other requests from a National Laboratory—which will ultimately allow them to advance their technologies. It aims to inspire a new generation of innovative researchers and instill a sense of shared responsibility for advancing knowledge and innovation within the scientific community.  

A select number of $100,000 vouchers will be awarded to people with big ideas for advancing clean energy, sustainability, or other key national lab-supported initiatives. The vouchers can be redeemed at one of eight national labs, which will then provide expertise and lab validation capabilities to the awardee to help them advance their concept closer to commercialization.  

Anyone interested in exploring the opportunity is encouraged to join an informational webinar on July 18 at 2 p.m. ET follow the TCF Open Voucher Call on HeroX to stay up to date on upcoming dates, deadlines, and important news.  


Forum1
Teams253
Resources
FAQ
Submission Form