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New Mexico company awarded nearly $70,000 for eco-sensor system

Release Date: 02/20/2009
Contact Information: Dave Bary or Anthony Suttice at 214-665-2200 or r6press@epa.gov

(Dallas, Texas – February 20, 2009) Rio Rancho-based Senspex, Inc. has been awarded $69,994 in funding from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to test a new contamination monitoring sensor system. This system will function as a diagnostics tool to rapidly detect and analyze hazardous biological and chemical targets in drinking water.

“EPA’s SBIR program is proud to support small companies such as Senspex that are demonstrating a commitment to improving human health and the environment,” said EPA Acting Regional Administrator Larry Starfield. “As a result of research conducted by this small business, new scientific and technological innovations will be developed to improve our drinking water quality.”

Senspex, Inc. is one of two small businesses in Region 6 to receive this 2009 funding. Potential commercial use of Senspex, Inc.’s proposed sensor system includes creating real-time monitoring equipment for hazardous industrial environments, detecting toxic industrial chemical spills in commercial/industrial locations, developing a real-time monitor for drinking water contaminants, identifying contamination in agricultural production, and monitoring for drinking water security.

Approximately 25 million small businesses in the United States employ more than 50 percent of the American workforce and develop most of the country's new technologies. SBIR was established to ensure that new technologies are developed to solve priority environmental problems, and is just one example of EPA's commitment to achieving real world environmental results through the use of innovative technology.

Since its inception in 1982, EPA’s SBIR program has helped fund more than 600 small businesses through its two-phased approach. Phase I awards are used to investigate the scientific merit and technical feasibility of a proposed concept. If the results of this phase are successful, businesses can submit proposals for Phase II contracts, which can reach amounts up to $345,000.

Additional information on the SBIR program is available at http://www.epa.gov/ncer/sbir/

More on the Phase I projects: http://es.epa.gov/ncer/rfa/2008/2008_sbir_phase1.html

About activities in EPA Region 6: http://www.epa.gov/region6

EPA audio file is available for 30 days at http://www.epa.gov/region6/6xa/audio.htm#audio022009_sbirnm

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