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Spring 2024 Montana State University “CATalyst” Quantum Gap Fund Opportunity Announcement

The MSU Technology Transfer Office announces the availability of quantum technology commercialization “gap funds,” to support the pre-commercialization activities around MSU-owned inventions exhibiting strong market potential.  These gap funds are being made possible by an award from the Air Force Research Lab to support technology commercialization, so are not intended to support basic research or answer fundamental scientific questions.  The purpose is to provide market-relevant development and/or validation for MSU quantum-related technologies that are beyond the point where traditional research funding is available or appropriate.  Examples of supported activities include:

  • performing additional testing to demonstrate and document a technology that has already shown feasibility
  • proving utility in an industry relevant application
  • developing a more manufacturable or economic version of a product
  • developing a commercial grade prototype
  • economic modeling, market research, and customer discovery activities

The intent is to both technically and commercially “de-risk” an invention such that the technology can be licensed to a company for commercialization, and the company can attract further investment (e.g. venture capital, angel investment, SBIR/STTR awards) in order to achieve commercialization.  For this particular opportunity, the technology to be de-risked must be related to quantum.  So, while all MSU colleges and departments are technically eligible, the departments most likely to be appropriate are Physics and Electrical Engineering.

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