What do you need to turn a brilliant idea into a business? “A good morale boost,” says Abhishek Motayed, Founder and President of N5 Sensors, Inc. of Rockville. Motayed had that boost this month when N5 Sensors received two Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) awards totaling $250,000. The grants came from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) towards N5 Sensors work developing low-power, computer chip-size benzene, carbon monoxide, and ammonia sensors. A 2012 UMD Invention of Year Award winner, Motayed has kept close contact with the university’s Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC), a crucial participant in the creation of N5 Sensors. “My interactions with OTC were very positive and encouraging. They are very knowledgeable—they knew exactly how to advise me on funding, commercialization, and patenting,” says Motayed.

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