All Roads Lead to Assistance: The DynSAN Case
Maciej Pindera, founder of DynSAN LLC, first got to know Alabama Launchpad, a program of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, when his company was nominated for an Alabama Innovation Award. Dynsan, a three-person company in Madison, is a research and development contractor in the physical, engineering, and computing industry, with capabilities in fields including complex cooling systems, simulations, high speed flows, and composite materials prototyping.
DynSAN was founded in 2011. Pindera, who serves as both staff scientist and managing partner, said employees of young companies like DynSAN are so busy seeking business and executing the work that they are often unaware of resources available to help small companies grow and succeed in Alabama. “This was certainly the case with us,” he said. “We were so fortunate to learn more about EDPA’s Phase 0 program when we were nominated for the innovation award. Once we found out about EDPA’s Alabama Launchpad program, we learned how easy it was to connect to resources to help us with our SBIR proposals.”
In the application for Phase 0 assistance, Pindera explained that DynSAN was applying for a Department of the Navy Phase I SBIR solicitation focused on solutions to improve thermal management efficiencies on future warships. With Launchpad funding, DynSAN proposed developing a multi-parameter optimizer for cold-plate designs in 2-phase high-energy cooling systems. DynSAN wanted to demonstrate it could optimize performance in terms of heat absorption and heat rejection, as a way to improve thermal efficiency.
Pindera’s plan paid off. DynSAN was awarded a $5,000 preliminary data award from Alabama Launchpad, and he reported recently that The Department of the Navy awarded DynSAN a $150,000 SBIR Phase I contract. Pindera explained that the Navy pays to milestones. DynSAN will first receive $80,000 for completing the base data. “If the Navy likes the results from the base data, DynSAN will receive the remaining $70,000.”
Pindera’s advice to technology startups is simple, “Take the time to explore SBIR funding for your company. While the process may be daunting, this federal funding is some of the best seed capital out there. The federal agencies do not take an equity position and you can advance your products through the development phase without diluting the value of your company.” He adds, “Alabama Launchpad is there to help you navigate this process. You can access this group from many avenues, and they all lead to assistance.”
Interested in learning more about the SBIR program and application process or know of small innovative companies that could benefit? Visit the Alabama Launchpad website or contact Mary Hope Garmon at 205-943-4727 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.