Growing the Clean Energy Sector in 2012

In his recent column on the Massachusetts clean energy sector’s prospects for 2012, Jon Chesto gets it right:

“The truth is, the green energy industry is still thriving in Massachusetts” – Mass. Market blog

Chesto doesn’t shy from the setbacks the sector has dealt with this year, but he points out the many positive aspects of the sector, including the growth numerous young cleantech companies are currently experiencing.

Here at Fraunhofer CSE, assisting early-stage companies is a major area of focus. We believe that providing research & development and strategic services to promising young companies in the sector helps reduce technology risk and accelerates commercialization at the critical early stages of venture formation.

Using this approach through our TechBridge program, and in close collaboration with partners—including the Massachusetts Clean Energy CenterNew England Clean Energy Foundation, and ACTIONetwork—we’re already seeing the results.

Companies like FirstFuel SoftwareDynamo Micropower, N12 Technologies, Clean Energy Innovations, and Altaeros have all secured substantial additional funding following assistance they received through the TechBridge-led U-Launch initiative. (Be on the lookout for posts on each of these exciting companies in the coming weeks.)

In 2012, we’re committed to exploring additional creative ways to grow the regional clean energy sector while expanding Massachusetts’ national impact in cleantech. For example, TechBridge has joined forces with theClean Technology and Sustainable Industries Association this year to connect cleantech entrepreneurs with utilities for the Utility Technology Challenge, with a new $100k award pool of funded pilot projects for winning early-stage technologies. New England companies take note: we’re reserving one pilot project for a company in the region.

Additionally, through our future “living laboratory” in Boston’s Innovation District, we’re committed to incorporating technologies from early-stage companies wherever possible for research and demonstration.

We encourage early-stage cleantech companies to get in touch with us to discuss your technologies and needs for the coming year (and to apply for the Challenge). Looking forward to many more clean energy success stories in 2012.

About author
I was the Managing Director of Fraunhofer CSE, and co-founded the Center in 2008 with the goal of establishing a world-class research organization for cutting-edge clean energy technologies.
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