FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dr. Ian Getreu, Director, Business Development
Phone: +1 (503) 888-2372
Ozark IC won $33,333 cash from the DOE Geothermal Manufacturing Prize and $25,000 cash in the 2020 MassChallenge final plus the opportunity for an investment of $50,000 from the Houston Angel Network.
FAYETTEVILLE, ARKANSAS October 2020 – In just one week, Ozark Integrated Circuits, Inc. has won two separate cash prizes totaling $58,333. Ozark IC is the only Arkansas-based company to win a cash prize in both competitions. As well, Ozark IC was the only company in the MassChallenge competition to be eligible to receive a $50,000 investment from the Houston Angel Network.
The first cash prize, announced Sunday, October 18, by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) at the Geothermal Resources Council’s Virtual 2020 Annual Meeting and Expo, is $33,333 in what is the first of four progressive competitions for the American-Made Geothermal Manufacturing Prize. The second prize, announced late Thursday afternoon, was the Mass Challenge Gold Prize, the final result of MassChallenge in which Ozark IC achieved finalist status earlier this month along with 47 other companies across the globe. The third prize is the $50,000 Houston Angel Network Investment, also announced as part of the MassChallenge awards.
“These two cash prizes plus eligibility for at least $50,000 in investment are very encouraging and humbling for us, especially to earn them in the span of one week. We see this as a validation of our development as a company and our manufacturing and development strategies” said Dr. Matt Francis, Ozark IC’s Founder and President. “MassChallenge has been a transformative experience and it closed on a very high note for us with the cash award and the associated Houston Angel Network opportunity. The Geothermal Manufacturing Prize is just starting and validates our decision five years ago to use additive manufacturing technology in geothermal applications. We are very grateful to our three partners: Sciperio, AltaRock Energy, and Helmerich & Payne, for their assistance and support. The next two years of this competition will certainly help us develop more solutions for geothermal applications and we are very grateful to DOE for both the award and the opportunity.”
Congressman Steve Womack of the 3rd Congressional District said “Innovation is a cornerstone of America, and Ozark IC exemplifies the ingenuity and hard work of our best and brightest researchers. Their novel concepts are creating game-changing technologies that support space missions and hypersonic capabilities. These recent awards highlight the significance of their work, and I’m proud that rapid advancements in geothermal manufacturing are happening right here in Arkansas.”
Geothermal Manufacturing Prize
Launched in April 2020, the Geothermal Manufacturing Prize is designed to spur innovation using additive manufacturing to address challenges fundamental to operating in harsh geothermal environments. The contest includes four progressive competitions with the first being called Ready! Each of the winners of the first competition earned the $33,333 cash prize.
Ozark IC had three partners in the Geothermal Prize venture: Sciperio Inc, whose manufacturing arm, nScrypt, makes the 3D manufacturing system that has been a core component of Ozark IC’s additive manufacturing capabilities for five years and two end users, AltaRock Energy Inc., the only VC-funded US geothermal exploration company, and Helmerich & Payne Inc., the largest drilling solutions provider in North America.
The four partners’ entry, “Using Additive Manufacturing to rapidly deploy new sensors into Enhanced Geothermal Systems”, in the competition makes use of many years of expertise in the application of Additive Manufacturing to enable the rapid integration of sensors into the XNodeTM, Ozark IC’s high-temperature signal processing platform. The additive manufacturing techniques are essential in enabling this capability.
Winners of each competition automatically get to move on to the next round in the series. In round two, Set!, competitors will demonstrate their design's promise to meet engineering and operational requirements. During the Set! contest, competitors are expected to make significant progress in putting together a team capable of building and creating a prototype design. Winners of the Set! contest will share a $1 million prize pool and move on to the Make! contest, as well as remain eligible for the final Geo! contest and the grand prizes.
“This project is of great interest to us,” said Dr. Geoffrey Garrison, Vice-President, Research and Development for AltaRock Energy Inc., “The ability to rapidly add a new sensor into a geothermal environment is obviously of great benefit. We are looking forward to the next stage of the contest.”