U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

Advanced Manufacturing Office – Industrial Distributed Energy

New Licensing Agreement Opens Energy Patents to NGOs, Non-Profits

February 22, 2012

The technology to improve access to fuel, electricity, and clean water for some of the world's poorest people may already be in the patent portfolios of DOE's national labs. The challenge, however, can be finding dedicated organizations willing to develop the technology and bring it to market, which can mean bringing energy technology to the most remote parts of the world.

As part of President Obama's Global Development Policy, a new licensing agreement opens a number of DOE patents to qualified non-governmental and non-profit organizations. Just as was offered to innovative startups with America's Next Top Energy Innovator Challenge, selected organizations only pay an upfront fee of $2,000 and a royalty of up to 2% of gross sales of licensed products.

Through new technology, the goal is to accelerate progress toward improved health, energy sustainability, and economic growth in some of the poorest countries in the world, many of which are in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Many organizations already have a presence in these countries, educating populations, caring for the sick, and improving standards of living by advancing the technology used to perform their most rote and domestic of tasks, like how they cook their meals. Read the complete story in the DOE Energy Blog.