Summary: Syracuse One Stop Shop for Business Innovation

by Jodi Ackerman Frank

The Clean Tech Center in downtown Syracuse is one of six cleantech business incubators across the state supported by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The incubator provides a centralized location, where cleantech startups are exposed to an entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes business leadership, economic development and R&D opportunities across New York State and beyond.

Here is a sampling of companies that The Clean Tech Center supports, with links to more information. Drawing on regional, national and international resources, the Center also has been recognized as one of the top 10 cleantech cluster organizations in the world.

The Right Resources at the Right Time

WavElectricLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. has developed a generator that converts the motion of ocean waves to produce low-cost, sustainable electricity. The WavElectric generator can be sealed in a buoy, scaled to different sizes, and deployed as a single modular system or in arrays.

Since WavElectric became a tenant in The Clean Tech Center, the company founders have met with venture capitalists and potential manufacturing partners. The Center also provided the startup with the opportunity to attend the RenewableUK Conference in Scotland. The country is the world’s leader in developing and commercializing wave and tidal energy. Read more.

Broad Network for Startup Support

The Clean Tech CenterLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page., managed through The Tech Garden incubator, is supported by a network of collaborators across New York State and beyond that includes academic and industry leaders, angel and venture capital investors, financial institutions, utilities, industry associations, government agencies, and even health insurance providers. Read more.

Forefront of the Green Innovation Movement

The Clean Tech Center has been recognized as one of the top 10 cleantech cluster organizations in the world and has been featured in the publications of organizations devoted to advancing a sustainable-energy economy. Read more.

Opening Doors

Ephesus LightingLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. designs and engineers LED lighting products used for commercial and industrial spaces, such as arenas, warehouses and manufacturing facilities. In addition to introducing the company to mentors, entrepreneurs and other cleantech startups, The Clean Tech Center helped Ephesus prepare a business presentation that led to a $50,000 Commercialization Assistance Program grant. The company also was granted $1 million in tax incentives from Empire State Development, New York’s chief economic development agency. Read more.

Tapping into New York State’s Vast R&D Assets

Even before becoming a Clean Tech Center tenant, Ephesus Lighting developed extensive relationships with universities and research centers throughout the State to establish itself. Those universities and colleges include Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI); Clarkson, Cornell, Syracuse and Binghamton universities; and the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at the University at Albany. Ephesus Lighting employees include graduates from Cornell, Clarkson, RPI and Syracuse. Read more.

It’s All Right Here — In New York State

The Clean Tech Center has also attracted out-of-state startups. MicroGen SystemsLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. was founded in 2007 as a spinoff company out of the University of Vermont (UVM). MicroGen has developed a family of renewable-energy devices that harnesses vibrational energy at a certain frequency to produce electricity. The chip extends battery life in wireless sensor network (WSN) systems. Since it has been connected with The Clean Tech Center, the startup has earned many recognitions and grants, including a NYSERDA technology commercialization contract worth $1.2 million. Read more.

Growing Cleantech Companies

Cortland ResearchLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page., an engineering firm in Homer, N.Y., has developed the Point of Use Network Controlled Electrical (POUNCE®) System, which controls and monitors energy use in real time through wall switches and outlets. Since Cortland Research has been a Clean Tech Center client, the company has been able to secure customers as well as partnerships with three manufacturers to produce the POUNCE system. Read more.