Apply to IMPEL

Applications are open for the 2023 cycle

For full consideration, please apply by November 15, 2022

Eligible applicants come from a variety of backgrounds

  • Entrepreneurs & Small Businesses who work in the built environment space such as engineering, architecture, urban design, facilities and real estate, healthy buildings, energy services, microgrids, data science etc.

  • National Lab Staff who conduct building and energy research

  • Non-Lab Awardees who have won Federal Opportunity Announcement Awards, Small Business Awards etc.

  • Faculty & Graduate Students who conduct building science R&D, or from BTO-affiliated university programs such as Solar Decathlon, JUMP into STEM, and others

  • Building Professionals who have new building innovation program ideas

Please note that IMPEL is open only to U.S. residents.

IMPEL is changing in 2022. Hear what's new in our Webinar.

While millions of dollars are spent for R&D and small businesses for building and energy technologies, only a portion of these reach users and create value.

Learn how IMPEL can help you impel your buildings and energy innovation to market impact at the recorded webinar above. Hear straight from the organizations and people behind IMPEL, plus an exciting announcement about our new partnerships this year.

Webinar slides are also available for download here.

2021-22 IMPEL Innovator Tracks

IMPEL has a strong theory of change: support technological transformations for a zero carbon built infrastructure, that promotes equitable wellness and resilience for all. To this end, the program is based on the three tracks below.

Decarbonize Track

For projects and ideas that radically reduce emissions for a zero-carbon built environment

Reduce embodied carbon

  • Carbon capture and storage in buildings

  • Nature bases solutions and alternative biogenic materials

  • Energy savings opportunities during extraction, manufacturing, transport, and installation of building materials and assemblies, including locally sourced and re-utilized/up-cycled materials

Reduce operational carbon

    • Technologies that reduce energy demand for space/water heating/cooling, lighting, and appliances

    • Improved energy equipment and controls

    • Provide energy from decarbonizing sources and implement flexible building-to-grid management.

Embrace radical circularity

    • Closed loop energy and water systems

    • Construction and demolition/agricultural/industrial waste as material banks

    • Life Cycle Carbon Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Costing (LCC) methods

Digitalize Track

For projects and ideas that connect buildings, distributed energy resources, grid, and communities

Digitalize the building lifecycle

    • Digital design and construction, digital supply chains

    • Smart equipment, building, and community scale sensors and controls

    • Advanced data analytics

Building-to-grid load flexibility

    • Integration of building, renewables/ thermal and electrochemical batteries/electric vehicle /grid

Harness unique regional contexts

    • Machine learning on building and urban image/text/novel sources of data

    • Digitization and scientific scrutiny of traditional climate-suitable methods/ materials

Democratize Track

For projects and ideas that provide equitable access to wellness in a resilient, living environment

Healthier environments

  • Ventilation/filtration+energy efficient equipment

  • Health and environment safe materials (e.g. Low volatile organic compounds, non-endocrine-disrupting materials, etc.)

  • Thermal comfort and wellness technologies: Inside the building (energy/wellness technologies), Whole building (passive and active systems), Community level (urban heat/pollution mitigation)

Equitable Resilience

  • Improve access to low-carbon and resilient energy for all communities

  • Enhance hard infrastructure, and nature-based infrastructure

  • Technologies to counter urban heat, pollution, and provide enhanced durability to natural disasters

Advance sustainable behaviors and capacity building

  • Up-skilling, re-skilling, training, attitude/awareness programs

Rules for Participation:

  1. Participation in the Workshops are fully funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. Candidates will be selected as "IMPEL Innovators" to participate at one IMPEL workshop, and informed at least 2-3 weeks in advance.

  2. All IMPEL Innovators are required to review the IMPEL+ Resource Toolkit in advance to prepare themselves for the IMPEL Workshop.

  3. Top IMPEL Innovators are selected after the workshops for access to U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and federal/state tech-to-market programs, and opportunities with partners Austin Technology Incubator and Greentown Labs' Pitch/Prize events and/or Accelerator.

  4. Starting in 2022, IMPEL will only accept applicants who have a U.S. Residency.