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Pathways to Partnership: Fresh Eyes, Creative Thinking Define GAIN's Approach to Solutions
June 8, 2020
It is widely known that the U.S. Department of Energy’s national laboratories are home to a wealth of experimental and computational capabilities. They offer state-of-the-art infrastructure along with modeling and simulation tools. Besides scientists and engineers specializing in conventional nuclear energy related technology, they are filled with experts in such fields as program management, economic analysis, technology road mapping, seismic analysis and regulatory planning.

For decades, outsiders’ access to the national lab system’s resources was limited, but in 2015, DOE launched the Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear (GAIN). Its mission: to speed up commercialization of new reactor designs and support technologies intended to improve the performance of today’s nuclear plants.

“What’s brilliant about GAIN is we can meet you where you are,” said Christine King, who became director in February 2020, succeeding Dr. Rita Baranwal, who now heads DOE’s Office of Nuclear Energy (DOE-NE).

GAIN Vouchers Offer New Opportunities to Nuclear Industry Developers
March 17, 2020
Although researchers at national laboratories have traditionally thought in terms of getting “awards” to fund their projects, a U.S. Department of Energy program is taking a new approach to keeping the nuclear energy research and development fires stoked.

Since 2016, the Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear (GAIN) has been providing vouchers to help companies engaged in nuclear research, streamlining commercialization efforts by offering the resources of DOE’s national labs for much less than what they would typically cost.

“In an ideal case, a young startup company has run into an issue that it doesn’t have the resources to solve,” said John Jackson, GAIN’s technical interface. “We view ourselves as a high-end technical service to benefit the United States.”

The Benefits of GAIN
May 13, 2019
When it comes to innovation in nuclear energy, the US is a hotbed of activity. That said, new nuclear technologies aren’t moving fast enough toward commercialization—not when you consider the urgent need for more carbon-free energy to fight climate change, or the fierce competition for lucrative nuclear markets from China and Russia. The Department of Energy (DOE) has expertise, facilities, and data that could help private companies and universities move their projects into the market faster, and make them more competitive. But taking advantage of these world-class resources isn’t as easy as you might think.

That’s why, in 2015, DOE launched a new initiative called the Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear (GAIN). GAIN was designed to provide the nuclear energy community with greater access to technical, financial, and regulatory resources that can speed up commercialization of new reactor designs and other technologies that can improve the performance of today’s nuclear plants.