Startup wins $1.1M grant for solar + long-duration storage R&D

Vermont-based Norwich Technologies announced last week that it has been awarded a $1.1M U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) grant to develop a low-cost hybrid solar power system that can deliver renewable energy 24 hours a day with the use of long duration thermal energy storage.

Norwich Technologies is working
on what is calls “Suntrap” technology, which uses concentrating solar power
(CSP), PV, and organic rankine cycle (ORC) generators plus thermal storage so
it can deliver round-the-clock solar power to C&I customers. The company
says it technology is modular and can be sized from 500-kW up to 10-MW of

Jonathan Lynch, Vice
President of Research and Development at Norwich Technologies, said, “Our
SunTrap 24/7 Solar Generation System solution will provide users with increased
energy resilience and reduced electricity costs. The SunTrap system
incorporates far more storage capacity than feasible with battery-based
solutions, enabling a cost-effective solar resource capable of around-the-clock

The U.S. Department of Energy
Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) awarded $12.3M to 11 small solar
companies from 9 states as part of DOE’s Small Business Innovation Research and
Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR/STTR) program. These new projects are
part of the second phase of the program.

The program consists of funding opportunities that encourage U.S.-based small businesses to engage in innovative research and technology development with the potential for future commercialization. Small businesses that demonstrated technical feasibility for innovations during their Phase I grants competed for funding for further development during Phase II.

Troy McBride, Chief
Technology Officer at Norwich Technologies and the project Principal
Investigator said, “We are delighted to be selected for Phase II funding of
this project, and to continue our work on this next generation technology that
will enable low cost 24/7 distributed-scale solar electricity.”

In a July 14 press release
announcing the grants, U.S. Energy Department Secretary Dan Brouillette stated,
“As our country reopens, small businesses will play a critical role in the
Nation’s economic recovery. I am pleased the Department can aid in this
recovery through the SBIR and STTR grant programs, which are helping spur
growth by providing meaningful financial investment for innovative energy and
science R&D at American small businesses.”


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