Early stage energy technologies face a number of challenges in transitioning for basic research to market solutions.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) have created specific initiatives in order to address the commercialization challenges that energy efficient and renewable energy technologies must face.
These initiatives are developed to launch emerging energy technologies off the ground and into the marketplace.
National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition is designed to build regional networks of student-focused business creation contests across the country. Through spring and early summer 2012, six Regional Clean Energy Business Plan Competitions will take place across the country—representing all of the United States' distinct regions.
America's Next Top Energy Innovator Challenge
The America's Next Top Energy Innovator challenge began on May 2, 2011.
That means that continuing through December 15, entrepreneurs will be able to apply for any of DOE's 15,000 patents for greatly reduced cost and with much less paperwork.
DOE has compiled a short document that answers the most commonly asked questions, such as what companies or organizations are eligible and what various requirements there are.
Commercialization Challenge Initiative
The Information Gap is based on the variation of jargon among trades. Technical language is foreign to the business community; a forum for scientists and businessmen to communicate provides translation. The Technology Commercialization Showcase is this forum.
It is simpler to maneuver around Capital Gaps with a clear course of action: a business plan. Business plans are more easily understood by Venture Capitalists than research papers, and provide steps toward the Marketplace. The Technology Commercialization and Deployment Fund encourages and enables funding toward business development.
Strategies have been created to overcome the Commercialization Valley of Death, which is not unique to national labs. One strategy developed is the Equity Share License Agreement.