Four Boulder businesses are among nine in Colorado to be announced today as recipients of U.S. Department of Energy grants to assist with the development of clean energy technologies that have strong potential for commercialization and job creation.

The nine grants in Colorado were among 88, representing $16 million in investments, awarded by the DOE to businesses through 28 states (full list).

The four Boulder businesses receiving the grants are:

Creative Light Source, Inc., awarded $224,521 to develop solar insulation to simultaneously provide electricity and address other building energy requirements such as heating or cooling.

Sinton Consulting Inc dba Sinton Instruments, awarded $174,690. Sinton Instruments has invented techniques that could radically change next-generation cell and module testers in order to lower the cost while simultaneously enabling sophisticated process control, based on detailed characterization of the electronic properties of silicon solar cells.

Boulder Environmental Sciences and Technology, LLC, awarded $155,000. This project will develop a Marine Profiling Radiometer. The MPR is a passive microwave remote sensor capable of measuring the stability of the marine boundary layer. This will also allow better scheduling of maintenance or other work necessary to realize the potential of the offshore wind industry in the United States and abroad.

ION Engineering LLC, awarded $150,000. The use of advanced solvents with tailored properties for CO2 captured at power plants can provide an economical and energy efficient means of drastically reducing emissions while continuing to utilize conventional fuel sources for electric power generation. ION Engineering and the University of Alabama are developing materials that can achieve this goal and accelerate the utilization of inexpensive, clean energy.

The remaining recipients in Colorado are Direct Solar LLC in Fort Collins, awarded $224,954; Pneumaticoat Technologies LLC in Westminster, awarded $150,000; Carbo Analytics, LLC in Fort Collins, awarded $150,000; ITN Energy Systems, Inc., in Littleton, awarded $149,692, and Seaforth, LLC in Fort Collins, awarded $149,900.

“Small businesses form the backbone of our economy, employing half of our workers and creating two out of every three new jobs in the U.S.,” Acting Energy Secretary Daniel Poneman said in a news release. “The grants announced today are just the latest step in the Energy Department's efforts to support the critical role that small businesses are playing in creating jobs for American workers and expanding our country's clean energy economy.

Companies that competed for the grants were encouraged to propose outside-the-box innovations to meet ambitious cost and performance targets.