Protium Innovations LLC Awarded Competitive Grant from the National Science Foundation

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Post Category:Protium Innovations LLC Awarded Competitive Grant from the National Science Foundation

Small Business Innovation Research Program Provides Seed Funding for R&D

Pullman WA, January 4, 2018 – Protium Innovations LLC (Protium) has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grant for $225,000 to conduct research and development (R&D) work on 3D printed liquid hydrogen fuel tanks for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

The objectives of this project will fill knowledge gaps in manufacturing methods and materials to cost effectively apply it in order to develop a new class of liquid hydrogen storage tanks for electric UAVs. The tanks will increase the reliability and performance of surveillance platforms in the armed forces, enable the inspection of key energy and transportation infrastructure, and enable more reliable intelligence and communications platforms for first responders during natural disasters. This project will enable the switch to renewable hydrogen electric drivetrains in a variety of additional transportation systems on the ground and in the air, reducing emissions and increasing energy independence.

“The National Science Foundation supports small businesses with the most innovative, cutting-edge ideas that have the potential to become great commercial successes and make huge societal impacts,” said Barry Johnson, Director of the NSF’s Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships. “We hope that this seed funding will spark solutions to some of the most important challenges of our time across all areas of science and technology.”

“Protium Innovations is proud to use this opportunity to promote a new clean energy solution in a young and growing technology sector,” remarked Dr. Patrick Adam, Co-Founder of Protium and Principal Investigator for this grant. “We look forward to being able to provide an integrated energy system that both meets customer’s needs for reliability and low cost operations, while providing the broader societal benefit of reduced pollution and less reliance on foreign energy producers.”

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 twice annually in June and December. Small businesses with innovative science and technology solutions, and commercial potential are encouraged to apply. All proposals submitted to the NSF SBIR/STTR program undergo a rigorous merit-based review process.

To learn more about the NSF SBIR/STTR program, visit:

About the National Science Foundation’s Small Business Programs: The National Science Foundation (NSF) awards roughly $200 million annually to startups and small businesses through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. The non-dilutive grants support research and development (R&D) across almost all areas of science and technology helping companies de-risk technology for commercial success. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $7 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering.