Focusing on strengthening the position of US companies in the solid-state-lighting (SSL) space, the DOE (Department of Energy) just announced a new $37.8 million funding round granted via the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Presumably, the grants will create SSL jobs in the US and promote US companies as leaders in SSL. The grants were awarded in the areas of core technology, product development, and manufacturing.
"The United States must lead in energy efficiency. These solid-state lighting projects will help us significantly cut our energy use, reduce our carbon footprint, and save money," said Energy Secretary Steven Chu. "This funding will also support the United States as a global leader in this rapidly evolving industry, creating high-tech, value-added jobs."
In the core technology area, Cambrios, the University of Rochester, and WiteOptics LLC will split $4 million. Cree, General Electric, Lightscape Materials, Osram Sylvania, Philips Lumileds, and PPG industries will receive $10.3 million in the product development area. The manufacturing area grant is $23.5 million and recipients include Applied Materials, GE Global Research, GE lumination, KLA-Tencor, Philips Lumileds, Ultratech, Universal Display, and Veeco Instruments.
Each recipient of the DOE funding will focus on a predetermined research topic. For instance, General Electric will research phosphors for warm-white LED light engines. The DOE SSL web site includes a complete list of recipients and the focus of their work. Of the 17 projects funded, six will focus on SSL source, component, or integrated luminaire development. Eight will target cost reductions through improvements in manufacturing equipment and processes, with the other three focused on core research.
The DOE has previously funded five rounds of research in core technology and product development. This latest round marks the first investment in manufacturing projects.