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ORNL to Open Applications for Innovation Crossroads

Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Innovation Crossroads program will open applications this September for its 3rd Cohort of technology innovators.

Innovation Crossroads is an early stage entrepreneurial fellowship program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory that supports leading technology innovators as they advance an energy or advanced manufacturing idea with the potential for global impact. This program is a public-private partnership founded by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and supported by the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office.

Interested individuals can visit to learn more about the program and to sign up for Cohort 3 updates.

Program Benefits

  • A two-year fellowship stipend to allow innovators to focus totally on their startup company
  • R&D funding support to be used in collaboration with ORNL researchers and facilities
  • Business mentorship, education, and introductions to potential customers, partners, and investors


In order to be considered, the applicant must meet each of the following criteria:

  • Applicants apply as individuals, not as companies or organizations.
  • Applicants must:
    • Must have completed the requirements for a PhD by May, 2018;
    • Be first-time technical company founders; and
    • Be either U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents.
  • Must be focused on an advanced materials- or manufacturing-based energy technology.
  • Must have the potential for broad impact that aligns with EERE’s mission to advance the national, economic, and energy security of the United States. Incorporated entities may not apply, although individuals that apply may have incorporated entities.
  • Innovators must not have raised more than $1M in private-sector funding at the time of application.

Employees of Oak Ridge National Laboratory are not eligible to participate in Innovation Crossroads as innovators while they are directly employed by ORNL. While innovators may be ORNL employees at the time of application, they must take Entrepreneurial Leave or terminate their employment with the Laboratory in order to participate.

Important Dates

September 2018 – Applications open
May 2019 – Cohort 3 begins