Argonne national lab calls for Chain Reaction Innovations applications

September 6, 2017 |

In Illinois, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory announced the opening of applications for innovators to join the second cohort of Chain Reaction Innovations (CRI), a novel entrepreneurial training program that goes beyond a traditional incubator or accelerator.

The program provides promising post-doctoral innovators access to the technical tools only found at a national laboratory, up to $100,000 in annual salary and up to $220,000 in research funds, plus world-leading mentoring partners. Those partners include the University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Purdue Foundry at the University of Purdue. This helps innovators to understand how to bridge the gap between benchtop ideas and the marketplace.

The program embeds top technical talent at Argonne to perform early-stage research and development (R&D) that may launch energy or manufacturing businesses in the future. The Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Programs address critical gaps in human capital development by providing stipends and cutting-edge workspace where talented scientific innovators can become first-time entrepreneurs.

In its first eight months, several companies in the first cohort of Chain Reaction Innovations have secured early wins, such as ClearFlame Engines who won a $225,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). ClearFlame Engines is developing drop-in engine technology to allow diesel generators and heavy-duty vehicles to run on biofuel without a loss of power.

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