Success Stories

Since participating in IMPEL's workshops, our Innovators are winning grants and awards, kicking-off project demonstrations, and gaining national recognition. Read more below on the successes of IMPEL's alumni.

Kyoung-Hee Kim

Ecoclosure

Intelligent Biochromic Window

IMPEL cohort 2021

Ecoclosure received a 2021 Architect R&D Award for their biochromic microalgae window innovation. This retrofit assembly provides dynamic shading, thermal blocking, water and air tightness, and improved indoor air quality (IAQ); further, the window acts as a renewable energy source, as algae in the system that becomes loaded with carbon is sequestered and can be used for biofuel. Coupled with a smart control system this technology cut building energy use by 20-30%.

Levon Atoyan

Active Energy Systems

Ultra-efficient Ice Thermal Storage

IMPEL cohort 2021

Active Energy Systems received a $1M NSF SBIR Phase II grant to advance their icephobic heat exchange (IHEX) technology and unlock the potential of ice thermal energy storage. AES also received a $1.1M SBIR Phase II grant from the DOE to increase the round-trip energy efficiency of ice thermal storage to >90%, a ~15% improvement compared to today’s ice-on-coil technology, and develop storage systems that can deliver a day’s worth of backup cooling, while generating enough cost savings to pay for themselves within 30 months. AES is partnering with NREL and commercialization partners to showcase the IHEX system’s performance.


Ayyoub Momen

Ultrasonic Technology Solutions

Direct Contact Ultrasonic Drying

IMPEL cohort 2021

Ultrasonic Technology Solutions received a Building Energy Efficiency Frontiers & Innovation Technologies (BENEFIT) award to advance their vibrational defrosting system. By replacing current refrigerator defrosting technology that uses heat, Ultrasonic’s direct-contact drying system will reduce energy use, helping to improve the quality of the frozen food and ultimately reducing food waste. Additional applications include HVAC and automotive systems.

Tanya Barham

Community Energy Labs

Automated Grid-Smart Energy Controls for Buildings

IMPEL cohort 2021

Community Energy Labs LLC (CEL) received a $206k SBIR grant from the Department of Energy, to develop scalable, novel interface design and workflow automation that improves the quality of model predictive control outputs, enabling small users with lean staffing to be able to achieve dramatic energy savings.

CEL also won a CRADA award with LBNL and ActiveBAS for a 'Low-cost, Scalable Control Solution for Grid-Interactive Small and Medium Sized Commercial Buildings.'

Josh Cable

Inventwood LLC

Wood Honeycombs for Energy Efficient Structural Applications

IMPEL cohort 2021

Inventwood LLC received $500k in funding from the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), to develop and manufacture lightweight 3D wood corrugated honeycomb structures to replace metal counterparts. Compared with widely used aluminum, 3D wood has similar mechanical strength, possesses one-third the density and one-fourteenth the cost, and reduces CO2 emissions by 90% in its manufacture.


Adam Landsman

Pulse IQ

Building Performance through the Power of Data Analytics

IMPEL cohort 2021

Pulse IQ gained several new clients since participating in the IMPEL+ program, and recently deployed their building energy management solution at a 433-unit condominium building located in NW Washington, DC. They monitor the performance of the dedicated outside air system and rooftime exhaust fans in real-time, adjust the fan speeds to ensure ideal air pressure in the building, and save energy. An example of how smart buildings can be both healthier and more efficient.

Tommy Gibbons

Hempitecture

Carbon-Negative, Bio-Based Insulation

IMPEL cohort 2021

Hempitecture received a two year Innovation Crossroads fellowship under the U.S. Department of Energy's "Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Program" (LEEP).

Hempitecture also received CRADA funds with Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Argonne National Laboratory to prototypes for cost-competitive, non-toxic, and low-embodied carbon continuous insulation sheathing product to increase building energy efficiency.



Natalia Mykhaylova

WeavAir

End-to-End Solution for Air Distribution Systems

IMPEL cohort 2021

WeavAir was awarded the Hype Sports Innovation Award for their end-to-end sensor and air quality improvement technology.

WeavAir helps operators of fitness centers and stadiums to comply with government regulations, while keeping athletes and staff safe by offering real-time insights on air quality and ventilation risks, tracking building occupancy and flow, and helping reduce building operation costs.

Brian Simmons

Onboard Data, Inc.

Automation of Building Data Classification

IMPEL cohort 2020

Onboard was the recipient of a Phase II SBIR award for $1.15m from the U.S. Department of Energy, which allows them to scale their software and API.

Onboard's API enables developers, data scientists and engineers with the opportunity to create products that will change the built world, from tenant wellness to energy efficiency.



Mark Isaacs

WonderWindow

High-R Window

IMPEL cohort 2020


Mark has received a USDA Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant, and will use this funding to test and code certify WonderWindow's affordable R5, 7, and 9 windows.

Mark is currently working on National Fenestration Research Council (NFRC) and American Architectural Manufacturer's Association (AAMA) testing and certification.


Elise Strobach

Aeroshield

Nanoporous Insulating Glass

IMPEL cohort 2020

Elise has been selected as an Entrepreneurial Research Fellow at Activate, a two-year, Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Program, and raised pre-seed funding.

Her team developed a window glazing technology, an ultra-lightweight aerogel material made from silica with the optical clarity of glass, but superior insulating properties. She was named in the 2020 Forbes 30 under 30 (Energy) list.

Namit Singh

MicroGrid Labs Solutions

DERCAM User interface

IMPEL cohort 2020

Namit partnered with Nicholas DeForest of Berkeley Lab to win $200,000 from the Technology Commercialization Fund of the DOE Office of Technology Transitions (OTT).

. The team will develop a user-friendly interface for Distributed Energy Resources Customer Adoption Model (DERCAM) to improve integration of electric vehicle charging loads with buildings, campuses and microgrids.


Daniel Gerber

Verify Energy

Powerfly Solar Monitor

IMPEL cohort 2020

Daniel’s team was named as a finalist for DOE’s American-Made Solar Prize

This plug-and-play solar monitor is a self-powered, easily installable device that extracts photovoltaic plant performance data from industrial PV and commercial buildings to enable net-zero buildings. It enables the penetration of renewables by saving $0.05/W on installations.

Nora Wang, Mark Borkum, and Harry Bergmann

PNNL, DOE

Unique Building Identification

IMPEL cohort 2019

This team piloted their first unique building identifier (UBID) data project, integrating across Washington DC's Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) and Office of Tax and Revenue. The city incorporated UBIDs into their open data portal for public access. This is an advancement in building data management that can scale to many other jurisdictions across the country.


Robert Hart, Howdy Goudey

Berkeley Lab

Thin-triple Windows

IMPEL cohort 2019


This team from LBNL partnered with manufacturers, — Anderson Corporation, Ply Gem, and Alpen HPP, to develop better new thin triple-pane windows, and scale production. The "thin triple” design makes it easier and more cost effective for window companies to switch from today’s standard R3 double glazing to R5 triple-glazed windows, and to conduct window retrofits.