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DOE SBIR/STTR FY2013 Phase I (Release 1)

Topics for FY 2013 Phase I (Release 1) are now open and available for your review and consideration.  The Funding Opportunity Announcement will be issued on Monday, August 13, 2012.  Letters of Intent are due to DOE by Tuesday, September 4, 2012, and applications are due to DOE on Tuesday, October 16, 2012.  

The purpose of the Program is to identify high potential technologies that are available for licensing by the DOE National Labs and transfer them to small businesses for commercialization.  The Ames Laboratory has one sub-topic listed under this Program, Catalyst for Selective Acid Transesterfication

It is the responsibility of the submitting small businesses to make a case for commercializing the technologies.  Your project plan should reflect the most fruitful path forward for developing the technology. In some cases, leveraging expertise or facilities of the National Lab via a subcontract may help to accelerate the research or development effort.   In those cases, your company may wish to negotiate with The Ames Laboratory to become a subcontractor on the application if you're interested in our topic.

For more information on our topic, please view page 45 of DOE's Phase I (Release I) Topic Release.  You can also read more about our technology on the Iowa State University Research Foundation (ISURF) website at

Questions regarding The Ames Laboratory sub-topic can be made to Stacy Joiner, IP Coordinator, by email at  To ensure fairness of opportunity for all small businesses and to provide an open exchange of technology technical data or other information, all questions and answers will be made publically available on this site through the application submittal date.  All questions will be redacted of any data that identifies the small business.  If answers to particular questions would require the release of proprietary data, Ms. Joiner can arrange to put a non-disclosure agreement in place between the parties effected.

DOE SBIR/STTR FY2013 PHASE I Questions and Answers Regarding The Ames Laboratory Sub-topic, Catalyst for Selective Acid Transesterfication:

1.   What is the technology readiness level (TRL)?

Using the technology readiness levels as defined by DOE's Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's Advanced Manufacturing Office (see, we feel this technology is at a TRL-4.

2.  May we speak to the inventors to discuss our ideas for the next steps?

One of the lead inventors is deceased and one is no longer active in this area of research.  If you would like to view the patent application, you can contact Ms. Renate Hippen of the Office of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer at the Iowa State University Research Foundation.  She is the licensing associate for the technology.  Her phone number is 515-294-4740.  Her email address is  You will need to complete a non-disclosure agreement with her to view the application.

3.  Will our submission be reviewed as a technology proposal or a business proposal?

The application will be reviewed using the criteria described in Part V, Application Review Information, of the Funding Opportunity Announcement (DE-FOA-0000760).  The three review criteria are (1) strength of the scientific/technical approach, (2) ability to carry out the project in a cost-effective manner, and (3) impact.  More details are contained in the FOA.

4.   Will your office be the primary reviewers or will it be reviewed through the usual DOE channels as a science/technology proposal?

No.  The DOE SBIR/STTR Office will perform an Initial Administrative Screening to ensure that the application meets the requirements.  Those passing the Initial Administrative Screening will be technically reviewed by DOE experts within the DOE program area to ensure that the project described in the application is the same as that described in the pre-application; DOE program managers may decline applications without further review if they fail to meet this evaluation criterion.  For more information, see page 52 of the FOA.

5.  Are there samples available for testing?

Yes.  Please contact Stacy Joiner at 515-294-5932 or to arrange.

6.  Will the technology need an industry partner to commercialize the product?


7.  Will I need an Option to the technology and what might the Option look like?

If your submitted proposal is chosen by DOE for an award that includes The Ames Laboratory/Iowa State University technology submitted, our Contractor (Iowa State University) agrees to negotiate in good faith an Option license agreement with you.  If you wish to preview a draft of the standard Option agreement, click here.