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Small Business in Watertown, Mass. Receives $70,000 for Environmental Innovation

Release Date: 03/23/2007
Contact Information: Paula Ballentine, 617-918-1027

(Boston, Mass. - March 23, 2007) - Using a $70,000 EPA contract, Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc., Watertown, Mass. will design and build a miniature, permanent nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer device that can be lowered into drinking water systems to provide continuous, precise, and specific information about pesticides, toxic industrial chemicals, mercury, PCBs, and other potentially hazardous materials.

The company is one of 36 nationally to receive one of the EPA contracts, under the “Small Business Innovation Research” (SBIR) program. The purpose of the SBIR program is to strengthen the role of small businesses in federally funded research and development, and help develop a stronger national base for technical innovation. Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc. is also one of five New England companies – four in Mass. and one in Conn. – selected for an SBIR contract this month.

Dr. Gerald Entine, President of Radiation Monitoring Devices, expressed his gratitude that the EPA was willing to use the SBIR Program to support new, high risk - high reward technologies to improve our country's environment. "Without the help of the EPA, this innovative concept for a durable, portable and highly sensitive instrument for analyzing water would have languished for lack of resources. Now, there is a very good chance that this new technology will flourish and make a substantial contribution to the EPA's critical mission."

The 22 million small businesses in the United States employ about 51 percent of the private work force and develop most of the country’s new technologies. Years ago, Congress recognized the need to strengthen the participation of small businesses in federally-funded research and development by passing a law creating the Small Business Innovation Research. An SBIR small business is defined as a for-profit organization with no more than 500 employees.

EPA solicits research proposals for SBIR grants each year. The next Phase I solicitation opens on March 15 and closes May 16, 2007.

More information: EPA’s SBIR program (

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