No one can deny that one of the fastest growing technology sectors is in renewable and clean energy, and the Department of Energy is trying to do something to expand that growth.  On Tuesday, March 29, 2011 the DOE announced a new program entitled “America’s Next Top Energy Innovator”.  This program will give start-up companies the opportunity to license some of the technology being developed in the National Laboratories at a significantly reduced upfront fee.  For $1,000, start-up companies can license up to 3 patents with the hope that they will build successful businesses.  This is a significant savings on the usual $10,000 to $50,000 upfront fee. 

There are 15,000 patents and patent applications available for licensing.  You can browse through the available technologies at  The reduced-fee licensing program will run from May 2 to December 15. 

More information on the program can be found at