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Small businesses in Lafayette and Wheat Ridge, Colo. receive $300K each to develop innovative environmental technologies

Awards to Sporian Microsystems and TDA Research among $3 million in EPA funding to help commercialize beneficial technologies nationally

06/03/2020
Contact Information: 
Richard Mylott (mylott.richard@epa.gov)
303-312-6654

DENVER - Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced two Colorado small businesses as recipients of Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program funding to develop and commercialize technologies to protect the environment. Sporian Microsystems, Inc., of Lafayette, Colo., will receive $300,000 to develop a low-cost system to identify harmful components in construction and demolition materials. In addition, TDA Research, Inc., of Wheat Ridge, Colo., will receive $300,000 to develop a non-toxic paint stripper that is methylene chloride-free. These awards are part of $3 million being provided to nine small businesses nationwide through EPA’s SBIR program.

"These Colorado small businesses are leaders in developing innovative solutions to pressing environmental concerns," said EPA Regional Administrator Gregory Sopkin. "These EPA funds will help these companies develop products that improve human health and the environment, including safer paint removers and a detection tool that will improve construction waste management and recycling.”

"TDA's paint stripper fills the void of an all-purpose paint stripper left by the EPA's ban of sales of methylene chloride-based paint strippers to consumers,” said Dr. Wallace Ellis of TDA Research.  “It is completely safe to use and effective against any of the paints that consumers want to remove."

These nine small businesses are receiving Phase II funding of up to $400,000 from EPA's SBIR program. These companies were previously awarded a Phase I contract of $100,000 to develop innovative environmental technologies and are now receiving a Phase II award to further advance and commercialize the technology. The funded technologies are focused on clean and safe water, air quality monitoring, land revitalization, sustainable materials management, and safer chemicals.

In addition to the Colorado businesses above, this year’s SBIR Phase II recipients include:

  • Faraday Technology, Inc., Englewood, Ohio, to develop electrochemical extraction and remediation of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in soils and to develop electrochemical pretreatment of PFAS-contaminated wastewater and landfill leachate streams.
  • framergy, Inc., College Station, Texas, to develop a novel water treatment technology to break down and mineralize PFAS. 
  • Intellisense Systems, Inc., Torrance, Calif., to develop a portable, easy-to-use air quality monitoring device to measure and track wildland fire pollutants.
  • KWJ Engineering Incorporated, Newark, Calif., to assemble and field-test a sensor package that monitors air quality and pollution from wildland fires.
  • microAeth Corporation dba AethLabs, San Francisco, Calif., to develop an integrated black carbon and carbon dioxide sensor platform for real-time identification and analysis of emissions from wildland fires.
  • Polykala Technologies, LLC, San Antonio, Texas, to develop ‘smart’ polymer nanofiber mats for selective and efficient removal of PFAS from wastewater.
  • 2WiTech, LLC, San Diego, Calif., to develop a low-cost portable sensing technology for detecting trace amounts of PFOA and PFOS in water.

EPA’s SBIR funding promotes local economies by empowering small businesses across the country to create jobs while developing novel environmental technologies. Phase II funding is specifically aimed at supporting these companies to bring their technologies to the marketplace. Since 1982, EPA’s SBIR program has provided over $189 million to 635 small businesses to develop technologies to solve the most pressing environmental problems. Approximately 29% of funded projects reported a growth in sales that exceeded five times the initial EPA funding.

EPA is one of 11 federal agencies that participate in the SBIR program, a competitive award-based program that supports small businesses to explore technological solutions with the ultimate goal of successful commercialization of those innovations. This program stimulates the economy while meeting the country’s research and development needs.

For more information on EPA's SBIR Phase II recipients, visit: https://cfpub.epa.gov/ncer_abstracts/index.cfm/fuseaction/recipients.display/rfa_id/665/records_per_page/ALL

Learn more about EPA’s SBIR program: https://www.epa.gov/sbir

Learn more about the Federal SBIR Program: www.SBIR.gov