Startup company Avium, LLC was recently awarded a two-year, $750,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to advance commercialization of its hydrogen production technology.
Kevin Leonard, associate professor of chemical engineering at the University of Kansas and CEBC researcher, along with his former doctoral student Joe Barforoush launched Avium in 2018. The pair spent the past couple years exploring the feasibility of their hydrogen-splitting innovation. Now, they hope to move the technology a step closer to commercialization with the help of the new grant as one of the NSF's “Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II projects".
The funds will support one graduate student and two new employees at Avium. Together, the team will explore how to make on-site hydrogen generation convenient and economically viable, with the goal of enabling a non-polluting, zero-emission hydrogen solution for powering electric vehicles.
Avium leases lab space adjacent to KU’s Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis to conduct experiments. This space is operated by the Bioscience & Technology Business Center, which supports industry growth in northeastern Kansas through university, city, county, and state partnerships.
To learn more about the project, click this link: https://today.ku.edu/2020/05/19/new-nsf-grant-firm-aims-cheaply-produce-hydrogen-consumers-water-splitting-breakthrough
And, here's the link to the NSF award information: https://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=1951216&HistoricalAwards=false
--Story by Claudia Bode