Governor Moore Announces Recipients of Maryland Department of Commerce ‘Build Our Future’ Grants

Published: 6/25/2024

ANNAPOLIS, MD — Governor Wes Moore today announced that the Maryland Department of Commerce has awarded 11 grants totaling $9 million through the Build Our Future Grant Pilot Program. The recipients represent projects that will support innovation infrastructure development in eligible technology sectors.

“To make Maryland more competitive, we need to turbocharge those areas of our economy that are producing fresh ideas and innovative new technologies,” said Gov. Moore. “These grants will not only help individual businesses grow, but will also help establish tools and resources to support growing industries.”

The Build Our Future Grant Pilot Program—part of the Governor’s Innovation Economy Infrastructure Act of 2023—provides grants of up to $2 million to private companies, nonprofit entities, local governments, or colleges and universities. Eligible industry sectors include advanced manufacturing, aerospace, agriculture, artificial intelligence, biotechnology, blue technology, cybersecurity, defense, energy and sustainability, life sciences, quantum, and sensors and robotics.

After a two-phase application process, the Department approved 11 projects for funding:

  • CraniUS  – $1,000,000 to establish a Device Innovation Lab to prototype and test implantable medical devices, enabling direct delivery of medicine to the brain. (Baltimore City)

  • Early Charm Ventures – $500,000 to retrofit the HEAT Center in Aberdeen into an innovation center, including wet labs, safety features and instrumentation for the materials industry. (Harford County)

  • InventWood – $1,000,000 for constructing a pilot manufacturing and innovation center to produce MettleWood®, a 100% wood material that is 50% stronger than steel while providing meaningful carbon sequestration benefits. (Frederick County) 

  • Ion Storage Systems – $1,000,000 for buildout of solid-state battery research and development and manufacturing facility. The batteries use a ceramic solid-state electrolyte structure and are meant to replace lithium-ion batteries. (Prince George’s County) 

  • Johns Hopkins University Remington Energy Accelerator Labs – $1,250,000 to equip a 12,000 square-foot advanced materials discovery and manufacturing process center. The “R.Labs” New Energy/Tech Infrastructure Hub will focus on innovations in energy transition, including carbon management, energy storage, wind power and grid optimization. (Baltimore City) 

  • Maryland Association of Community Colleges – $935,680 for the creation of the Maryland Cyber Workforce Accelerator with the purchase of eight BCR Cyber Series 3000 cyber ranges to serve 16 community colleges. (Anne Arundel County)

  • QC82 – $200,000 for construction of a 1,000 square-foot integrated photonics, testing and packaging facility for its unique detectors and quantum optics devices, part of an investment to build room-temperature quantum computers. (Prince George’s County)

  • Quantum Space – $1,000,000 for the construction of Maryland’s first spacecraft assembly, integration, test, and engineering facility dedicated to satellite constellation manufacturing. (Location to be Determined)

  • Saft America – $996,120 for the conversion of 4,700 square-feet of office space into a conditioned “dry room” environment specifically designed for lithium-ion cell production with the installation of automated production equipment. (Baltimore County)

  • The Mill of Black Horse LLC – $1,000,000 for the construction of a 16,000 square-foot fertilizer plant for precision blended fertilizers using climate smart technologies serving over 1,000 farmers in the region. (Harford County)

  • University of Maryland Advanced Quantum-Centered Experience for Startups and Students (AQCESS) – $118,600 for the implementation of a “shared lab” concept for quantum technology startups – equipment, platforms, and training – at the Quantum Startup Foundry. (Prince George’s County)
“The Build Our Future Program is a bold new way to accelerate growth in the innovative sectors where Maryland is poised to lead and dominate,” said Maryland Department of Commerce Secretary Kevin Anderson. “These grants will support innovation and spur economic growth across Maryland and help make sure we’re competitive in these key industries.”