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Small Business in E. Hartford Conn. Receives $70,000 for Environmental Innovation

Release Date: 03/23/2007
Contact Information: Paula Ballentine, 617-918-1027

(Boston, Mass. - March 23, 2007) – Using a $70,000 EPA contract, Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. of East Hartford, Conn. will develop a low-cost, very compact sensor that can detect leaks of volatile organic compounds from chemical, automotive or other facility process lines. This innovation is expected to have direct applications in emission and gas sensing process monitoring.

The company is one of 36 nationally to receive one of the EPA contracts, under the “Small Business Innovation Research” (SBIR) program. The purpose of the SBIR program is to strengthen the role of small businesses in federally funded research and development, and help develop a stronger national base for technical innovation. Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. is also one of five New England companies – four in Mass. and one in Conn. – selected for an SBIR contract this month.

"Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. is excited for this opportunity to develop a very compact infrared spectrometer for the detection of volatile organic compounds," said Senior Engineer Joe Cosgrove. “We are grateful to the EPA for supporting this new sensor technology.”

The 22 million small businesses in the United States employ about 51 percent of the private work force and develop most of the country’s new technologies. Years ago, Congress recognized the need to strengthen the participation of small businesses in federally-funded research and development by passing a law creating the Small Business Innovation Research. An SBIR small business is defined as a for-profit organization with no more than 500 employees.

EPA solicits research proposals for SBIR grants each year. The next Phase I solicitation opens on March 15 and closes May 16, 2007.

More information: EPA’s SBIR program (

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