DOE awards STTR, SBIR grants to several bioenergy projects

By Erin Voegele | June 21, 2017

On June 20, the U.S. Department of Energy announced it will award 263 grants totaling $116 million to 184 small businesses under the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs. Several of the awards support bioenergy and biofuel projects.


Phase I bioenergy awards include:

Glucan Biorenewables LLC: $150,000 STTR grant for a project tilted “High Purity Cellulose for Low-Cost Nanocellulose and Biofuel Production.” The project addresses the challenge of manufacturing high quantities of nanocellulose in a more energy efficient and cost-effective manner. The objective is to manufacture nanocellulose together with biofuels to lower unit production costs and make both products economically available for new market applications.

InnoSense LLC: $150,000 SBIR grant for a project titled “Supramolecular Nanocellulose Drug Excipients.” The project supports DOE project objectives that aim to develop new methods to convert biofeedstocks into commercially viable products. An ecofriendly, nontoxic material sourced from biomass will be formulated for use as an oral drug carrier for therapeutics that are otherwise difficult to administer orally.

Innovatech Engineering LLC: $140,684 SIBR grant for a project titled “High-Performance Nanocellulose Composite for Aviation and Aerospace.” A major goal of the project is to develop routes toward injection-molding of standard parts.

Opus 12 Inc.: $150,000 SBIR grant to support a project titled “Utilization of Waste CO2 to Make Renewable Chemicals and Fuels.” The project description notes the utilization of waste CO2 could provide a new source of revenue for CO2-emitting industries, and a source of carbon-based compounds for use as feedstocks in biological and chemical processes. 

Reactive Innovations LLC: $149,999 SBIR grant for a project titled “Novel Cold Plasma System for the Reaction of CO2 and Liquid Feed Streams for the Production of Value Added Products.” The project aims to utilize a non-thermal plasma reactor system to convert CO2 into value-added products.

Sustainable Innovations LLC: $149,997 SBIR grant for a project titled “Renewables-Driven Production of Organic Acids from Industrial CO2 Waste Streams.” The company plans to use its electrochemical carboxylic acid generation system to convert CO2 into organic acids that could be used as feedstock in industrial processes.

Visolis Inc.: $150,000 SBIR grant for a project titled “Production of High Value Products from Gaseous Waste Streams.” The project aims to convert greenhouse gases into a range of high-value chemicals used in a variety of industries.


Phase II bioenergy awards include:

CF Technologies Inc.: $999,997 STTR grant for a project titled “Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Brown Grease from Wastewater Treatment Plants to Biodiesel using Supercritical Fluids.” The company has developed a technology to convert brown grease into high-quality biodiesel.

Mainstream Engineering Corp.: $999,993 SBIR grant for a project titled “Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Food Waste and Remediation of Aqueous Byproducts.” The company is developing a process to improve the oil yield and reduce the aqueous byproducts during the hydrothermal liquefaction of wet wastes.

MOgene Green Chemcials: $1 million SBIR grant for a project titled “An Optimized Biocatalyst for Efficient Conversion of CH4 and CO2 into Bioproducts.” The project aims to establish a sustainable, biobased technology to convert biogas and stranded natural gas into high-value products.

NexTech Materials Ltd. dba Nexceris LLC: $1 million SBIR grant for a project titled “Conversion of Biogas to Liquid Fuels on Superior Catalysts.” The project aims to create new catalysts that will allow more efficient generation of fuels from biogas.

Shockkwave LLC: $1 million SBIR grant for a project titled “Fractionation and Dehydration of Existing Feedstocks for Biomass and Biopower Production.” The project aims to harvest corn fiber from corn grain to produce cellulosic biofuels.