TABLE 2.3 Fiscal Year 2011 Funding for Research and Development for Solid-State Lighting Program

Pathway Technology EY2011 DOE Appropriationa Applicant Cost-Sharea Cost-Share Percentage
Core LED $3.7 $0.9 19.6%
OLED $0.7 $0.09 11.4%
Development LED $L5 $0.3 16.7%
OLED $I.4 $0.3 17.6%
Manufacturing LED $L3 $0.2 13.3%
OLED $0.5 $0.2 28.6%
TOTAL $9.I $1.99 17.9%

aIn millions of dollars.

SOURCE: James Brodrick, DOE.

As of December 2011 (DOE, 2011b) the DOE SSL R&D portfolio (consisting of projects awarded in current and past years that are currently being funded) included 38 projects addressing both LED and OLED technologies, with a total of approximately $114 million in government (including FY2009 ARRA-funded projects that remain ongoing) and industry investment (see Table 2.2). DOE was providing approximately $69 million ($44.6 for LEDs and $23.4 million for OLEDs ), and $45.9 million ($34.4 for LEDs and $11.5 million for OLEDs ) was provided through cost-shares by project awardees. Twenty-four projects were focused on LED technology and 14 on OLED technology. The BTP, along with ARRA funding, supported 38 projects, to which may be added 9 projects funded by the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program in the Office of Science for an additional total of $4.1 million.

Table 2.3 shows the distribution of FY2011 R&D funding for core technology, product development, and manufacturing, as summarized in Table 2.2. Less than half (48.4 percent) of all R&D funding is devoted to the development of core technologies. Cost-sharing by grantees averages just under 18 percent (17.9 percent) of DOE funding and has declined in the past few years, particularly in the Product Development program, where one might expect more significant industry partnership.

The DOE Lighting R&D program also addresses issues related to commercialization, such as working with industry and other partners (e.g., Pacific Northwest National Laboratory [PNNL]4 and ORNL) to coordinate the development of standards or reduce barriers to market introduction of technologies that emerge from its efforts. It supports independent testing of SSL products, supports exploratory studies on market trends and helps to identify critical technology issues, supports workshops to foster collaboration on standards and test procedures, promotes a number of industry alliances and consortia, disseminates information, and supports a number of other initiatives (Brodrick, 2011). It also conducts technical, market, economic, and other analyses and provides incentives to the private sector to innovate.

FINDING: DOE has done an impressive job in leveraging a relatively small level of funding to play a leading role nationally and internationally in stimulating the development of SSL.

FINDING: In recent years, DOE has expanded its portfolio to include R&D into manufacturing projects, largely at the direction of Congress in the FY2009 ARRA funding and the FY2012 appropriations bill.

FINDING: The percentage of matching funds from R&D grant recipients was 18 percent for FY2011 funds. Ten years ago, for FY1999 to FY2001, it had been roughly 40 percent. It has declined in the past few years, particularly in the Product Development category.

RECOMMENDATION 2-2: The Department of Energy’s solid-state lighting program should be maintained and, if possible, increased.

RECOMMENDATION 2-3a: The Department of Energy should seek to obtain 50 percent cost-sharing for manufacturing research and development projects, as was done with the projects funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

RECOMMENDATION 2-3b: As part of the next mandated study of the Department of Energy Solid State Lighting program in 2015, an external review should be conducted to provide recommendations on the relative proportions of funding that should be dedicated to core technology, product development, and manufacturing projects, and what the targeted level of matching funding should be in each of these three funding categories.

EPACT (05) directed DOE to establish a Next Generation Lighting Initiative (NGLI) to support the research, development, demonstration, and commercial application of


4 In FY2011, $8.5 million was directed toward commercialization work at PNNL (James Brodrick, DOE, personal communication to Martin Offutt, National Research Council, February 22, 2012).

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