Ultrasonic Technologies, Inc. Awarded Competitive Grant from the National Science Foundation.
Small Business Innovation Research Program Provides Seed Funding for R&D
Wesley Chapel, Florida, August 29, 2019. ULTRASONIC TECHNOLOGIES, Inc. (UST) has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to conduct research and development (R&D) work to develop a new method to inspect in real time mechanical quality of crystalline Silicon solar cell strings using in-line Activation Station (AS) technology. The goal of the SBIR project is to improve throughput of commercial solar module line by identifying and eliminating solar cells with sub-millimeter cracks at the initial stage of PV module production after cells are connected in strings.
In Phase I, the UST team will prove the feasibility of the AS concept for strings and complete initial development of the AS methodology, which will be supported by comprehensive experiments and computer simulation. A laboratory AS tool prototype will be designed, manufactured and certified. In Phase II, a follow-up development of the AS hardware and operational software will be completed, and an AS prototype will be installed in module production facility for AS qualification and high-volume testing.
"NSF is proud to support the technology of the future by thinking beyond incremental developments and funding the most creative, impactful ideas across all markets and areas of science and engineering," said Andrea Belz, Division Director of the Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships at NSF. "With the support of our research funds, any deep technology startup or small business can guide basic science into meaningful solutions that address tremendous needs.”
"Ultrasonic Technologies (UST) is proud to be awarded the prestigious NSF/SBIR grant", said Dr. Sergei Ostapenko, President and CEO of the company. "UST is a Florida-based R&D and manufacturing company specializing in ultrasonic quality and process control equipment for various industries. Using seed funding by the U.S. government our proprietary Resonance Ultrasonic Vibration system is commercialized and installed in production of solar cells, fuel cells, and advanced ceramics".
Once a small business is awarded a Phase I SBIR/STTR grant (up to $225,000), it becomes eligible to apply for a Phase II grant (up to $750,000). Small businesses with Phase II grants are eligible to receive up to $500,000 in additional matching funds with qualifying third-party investment or sales.
NSF accepts Phase I proposals from small businesses year-round. Small businesses with innovative science and technology solutions, and commercial potential are encouraged to apply. All proposals submitted to the NSF SBIR/STTR program, also known as America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, undergo a rigorous merit-based review process.
To learn more about America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, visit: https://seedfund.nsf.gov/
About the National Science Foundation's Small Business Programs: America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF awards $200 million annually to startups and small businesses, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. Startups working across almost all areas of science and technology can receive up to $1.5 million in non-dilutive funds to support research and development (R&D), helping de-risk technology for commercial success. America’s Seed Fund is congressionally mandated through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $8.1 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering.