Low-cost colorimetric sensor for methane emission monitoring

EPA Contract Number: EPD17033
Title: Low-cost colorimetric sensor for methane emission monitoring
Investigators: Fan, Benson
Small Business: Biolnspira, Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 2017 through August 29, 2018
Project Amount: $100,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2017) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , SBIR - Air and Climate


On-site, timely and accurate identification of fugitive emissions is an important step toward leak mitigation controls and strategies; however, no technology today is able to fill the sweet spot to provide the sensitivity, cost, and portability that the gas industry is in dire need of. BioInspira has developed arrays of color thin film that has been modified to bind to different components of natural gas in order to provide an accurate (1-1000 ppm), small, power-efficient (3 years’ operating life), and low-cost ($49USD) gas sensor for surveyors and leak inspection crews from the oil and gas industry that is at least 1000 times lower in cost than the current leak inspection instruments, while providing better sensitivity and selectivity. Utility companies have demonstrated strong interest in BioInspira’s solution, as we have been granted a paid pilot project to further develop our solution from Operations Technology Development (OTD), and is co-sponsored by 10 major utilities in North America. The initial utility natural gas detection market is $101MM USD, while the immediate adjacent mid&upstream market size is estimated at $325MM USD. With our solution, we aim to provide a clean and safe environment for the growing industrial and healthcare needs.

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final