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Contracting Mechanisms

Your small business needs expert advice on a technical problem. Your university research project requires state-of-the-art facilities you do not have. Your Fortune 500 corporation needs a new capability or technology to augment your in-house research or products. Whether your challenge involves energy, environmental, computational, national security or health sciences, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory may be able to help you overcome it. There are a variety of ways to partner with us to support your science and technology goals...and your business strategy.

The U.S. Department of Energy provides guidelines for private companies, state and local governments, and universities to gain access. The guidelines are common to all national laboratories. However, Battelle, as the operator of PNNL, also can partner with companies, governments, and universities directly in its private capacity.

PNNL welcomes the opportunity to partner with industry in support of DOE's mission to move science from the national laboratory to commercial use. To understand the various ways to work with PNNL, consult the table below. And make a call. PNNL may be just what you need.

Type of Agreement Description When to use this mechanism Who to Contact
Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) Cost-shared collaboration with industry for R&D activities of mutual benefit Works best when an organization has a research program related to existing government-funded work at PNNL. A CRADA would allow mutually beneficial collaboration to occur. Cheryl Cejka, Director
Technology Commercialization
(509) 375-3700
Direct Contract with Battelle Permits industry, government agencies, and nonprofits to directly fund and negotiate contract R&D work through a private contract with Battelle Ideal for industry partners who want to leverage core Laboratory science and technology, but looking for application- or solution-specific development. Projects are client-funded; most flexible contract arrangement. Bruce Simanton, Manager
Sales Management
(509) 371-7608
License Agreements Granting of rights to practice Battelle intellectual property to enable client's business plan Appropriate for companies interested in using Battelle's intellectual property for commercial use. Cheryl Cejka, Director
Technology Commercialization
(509) 375-3700
Technology Assistance Program Forty hours of PNNL staff time annually Ideal for small technology-based companies who desire access to unique capabilities at PNNL. Gary Spanner, Manager
Economic Development Office
(509) 372-4296
User Facilities Agreement Provides access to certain dedicated DOE laboratory facilities Provides access for non-PNNL researchers to use specialized equipment at PNNL. Bruce Simanton, Manager
Business Development and Analysis
(509) 376-0161
Work for Others (WFO) Enables federal and non-federal agencies to access PNNL's capabilities on cost-recovery basis Appropriate for situations where an agency wants direct access to PNNL capabilities under a cost-reimbursement arrangement through DOE operating contract. Marlene K. Meeks
WFO Onsite Specialist
(509) 372-6258


A company with interest and capabilities in a specific research or technology area might consider partnering with PNNL using a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement. A CRADA is a contractual agreement in which both parties collaborate, share costs, and pool the results of their research and development program.

Your staff, facilities, equipment, and other resources are leveraged with those of PNNL, and you gain access to PNNL's science and engineering expertise, results of recent research, and technical facilities. A CRADA provides the unique opportunity to use new technologies evolving from federal research programs in a collaborative way.

Learn more about CRADA.

Direct Contract

PNNL is operated under contract for the U.S. Department of Energy by Battelle. The Laboratory is unique in that Battelle is allowed to build a diversified contract research and technology transfer business serving industry and other government agencies as long as the Laboratory fulfills its primary objective: to fully meet DOE research, development and demonstration needs.

The bottom line is that contracting with PNNL under Battelle's Use Permit (Word, 40K) is not a complex process. Through Battelle, PNNL works for a variety of clients ranging from federal, state and local governments to private companies both nationally and internationally. The company is flexible in its approach to contracting and, depending on the nature of the services, will typically contract on a fixed price, time and material, or cost-reimbursement basis.

User Facility Agreement

Scientists researching energy, environmental, health, or national security issues can arrange access to specialized facilities through PNNL's User Facilities Agreement. User facilities include DOE's William R. Wiley Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory and the Applied Process Engineering Laboratory. Proprietary and nonproprietary agreements are possible, depending on the user's willingness to publish the results of the research.

Learn more about facilities and equipment for business.

Work For Others

An organization pursuing technology goals could arrange access to the national laboratory's resources through the Work for Others (WFO) program. Here, PNNL staff perform work using PNNL facilities and technical expertise. Standard terms of the agreement are established by DOE, but DOE does not fund the work. DOE has a mission to provide technical assistance to other federal agencies, commercial companies, local and state governments, and foreign governments, and any of these may use WFO to access PNNL's specialized research and development capabilities on a full cost-recovery basis (reimbursable agreements). Technologies may be transferred from the laboratory to the marketplace for further development or commercialization.

Learn more about DOE's Work For Others (WFO) program.

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