Arrowhead Center at New Mexico State University will receive $1 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to encourage the development and commercialization of new high-tech clean technologies in New Mexico, the DOE announced Friday. The project, an expansion of the New Mexico Clean Energy Resilience and Growth, or NM CERG, Cluster at Arrowhead Center is in collaboration with the New Mexico Economic Development Department, Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories.
The new funding builds on work to develop the initial NM CERG cluster and run a hybrid accelerator for New Mexico clean-tech businesses, EnergySprint + SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research). The accelerator is being funded through a $50,000 competition prize the DOE’s Energy Program for Innovation Clusters, or EPIC, awarded to Arrowhead Center last year.
“We are proud of this important effort, working alongside the state’s national laboratories and other collaborators, to ensure New Mexico is positioned to be a leader in high-tech job growth,” said NMSU Chancellor Dan Arvizu. “NMSU’s Arrowhead Center is a proven catalyst for economic development and a true asset to the entire state.”
The DOE announced Friday that it awarded funding to 10 incubators and accelerators throughout the U.S., including Arrowhead Center.
“Arrowhead Center is excited to expand upon the work started through our DOE EPIC competition award, which was a catalyst in starting and growing a robust cluster for clean and renewable technology startups in New Mexico,” said Dana Catron, director of strategic operations at Arrowhead Center and project director for NM CERG. “With the support of our partners, we will create a pipeline of support for these startups, solidifying New Mexico’s role in the clean energy economy and support the commercialization of technologies that have global impacts. We can’t wait to get started.”
Arrowhead Center will provide education and support to startup businesses, while NMEDD will support cluster expansion and promotions. Los Alamos and Sandia will provide NM CERG participants with access to lab expertise, facilities and technical programming.
“Sandia is proud to be a part of this important work,” said David Kistin, manager of technology and economic development at Sandia National Labs. “We look forward to expanding opportunities for New Mexico businesses and entrepreneurs alongside Arrowhead Center, Los Alamos and NMEDD.”
Arrowhead Center is NMSU’s technology transfer office, entrepreneurship center and economic development engine, providing education and support to startup businesses across New Mexico. Arrowhead’s offerings include startup accelerators, mentor networks, and funding and technical assistance programs.
“New Mexicans know that acting on climate can open enormous economic opportunities for our state. Arrowhead Center at NMSU is turning those opportunities into reality by leveraging public-private partnerships to provide businesses with the tools they need to advance clean energy and create good-paying jobs,” said U.S. Sen. Ben Ray Luján. “I’m pleased to see NMSU recognized for its leadership in supporting businesses and entrepreneurs, and I look forward to working with our congressional delegation to bring additional federal investments to our state.”
EPIC is a $10 million funding opportunity created by the DOE’s Office of Technology Transitions to underscore the importance of regional clusters, which increase productivity of area companies, drive the direction and pace of innovation, and stimulate the formation of new businesses, further reinforcing the cluster itself.
“Creating high-tech clean energy jobs is a priority for Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham,” said NMEDD Cabinet Secretary Alicia J. Keyes. “This support from the U.S. Department of Energy will allow the state EDD to assist NMSU’s Arrowhead Center as it becomes an important cluster for clean energy innovation and that will bring higher-paying jobs to southern New Mexico and help diversify our economy.”