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Chattanooga, TN. (March 5, 2014) – EPB and The Company Lab (CO.LAB) are inviting entrepreneurs with applications in smart grid development to apply to Chattanooga’s summer business accelerator, GIGTANK.
GIGTANK 2014 will offer participants in the smart energy space opportunities to build and test their applications using millions of data points from the nation’s most automated smart distribution grid, owned and operated by Chattanooga’s municipal utility, EPB.
EPB’s fully deployed smart grid is operating with a complete fiber optic communications backbone, award-winning distribution automation, AMI, smart grid management software, voltage optimization, and a host of other tools to optimize the performance of the grid.
In addition to live data points, participating teams receive free housing for the summer, $15k in seed capital, access to the community’s one gigabit-per-second Internet connectivity (the “gig”) as well as guidance from mentors and advisors from EPB, industry leaders such as S&C Electric Company and others.
At the end of the program, GIGTANK graduates will get a chance to pitch their business applications to investors from Chattanooga to startup hotspots across the country.
Ideal applicants may range anywhere from data analytics startups to university-level entrepreneurs or researchers studying smart grid development. Successful applicants are likely to be focusing on issues such as:
The ten-week program (May 12- July 31) is also inviting startups in the additive manufacturing and healthcare fields to apply. Applications may be found at http://www.thegigtank.com/startup-tracks/smart-grid/ and are open until March 14, 2014.
Established as an independent board of the City of Chattanooga in 1935, EPB is a municipally-owned utility that provides electric power and fiber optic communications services as a means of promoting economic development and enhancing quality of life across the local area.
EPB serves nearly 180,000 homes and businesses in a 600 square-mile area that includes greater Chattanooga, as well as parts of surrounding counties and areas of North Georgia.
In 2010, EPB became the first provider in the United States to deliver up to 1 Gig (1,000 mbps) internet speeds utilizing a community-wide fiber optic network that provides access to every home and business in its service area. In 2015, EPB became the first (and to date) only American ISP to make up to 10 Gig (10,000 mbps) internet speeds accessible to all of its residential and commercial customers as a standard offer.
EPB has also utilized its community-wide fiber optic network to deploy the most advanced and highly automated smart grid power management system in the nation. In recognition of EPB’s groundbreaking infrastructure, the Department of Energy and Oak Ridge National Laboratory are utilizing EPB’s smart grid as a national model for researching and developing best practices. EPB is also the first major power distribution utility to earn the USGBC’s PEER certification for having a highly automated, modernized electric power grid.
GIGTANK is the world’s only startup accelerator connected to a living, metro-wide fiber optic network. Hosted by The Company Lab, this annual program attracts entrepreneurs from across the globe to Chattanooga, TN – the home of America’s first widely-available gigabit Internet service. With Internet speeds that run 100x faster than the national average, Chattanooga offers entrepreneurs the opportunity to innovate on the broadband platform of the future.