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NextGeneration Energy


Welcome to Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. (AFR), a privately owned small business, founded in 1980, that supplies contract research, product development and analytical services to corporate research centers, research institutes, and government laboratories. AFRís initial work employed advanced Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy methods to understand the starting composition and reaction behavior of fuels. These diagnostic techniques were subsequently extended to a wide range of applications, including the measurement of gas compositions and temperatures, particle size distributions, and the thickness, temperature, optical properties, and composition of thin films. Through this research, AFR scientists and engineers became pioneers in infrared instrumentation and its applications, producing numerous patents and publications.

AFR has diversified into a range of technologies and applications through the addition of leading researchers in a broad range of technical areas, including: gas turbine instrumentation, spectroscopy, carbon materials, distributed energy generation, alternative fuels, hydrogen generation and storage, waste-to-energy conversion, coal and biomass fuels, mercury control, radiation detection, robotic vision, electronic materials and testing devices, and image analysis. Applications include: defense, homeland security, energy, aerospace, chemical, semiconductor, pharmaceutical, biotech, fuel cells, medical and educational software.

AFR has had significant prior commercialization experience resulting from its involvement in the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program.  These include the direct sale of products, licensing, and the creation of spin-off companies. The first spin-off activity included the creation of On-Line Technologies, Inc. (OLT) in 1991. OLT specialized in the development and marketing of FT-IR based process monitoring equipment for the semiconductor industry and environmental applications. It was purchased by MKS Instruments in 2001 and is now called the On-Line Products Group. The second spin-off was Real-Time Analyzers, Inc., which was created in 2001 to develop, manufacture, and market FT-Raman Instruments for process monitoring and homeland security applications. In early 2006, AFR created its ImTelligence business unit to focus on advanced image analysis technologies, including video-centric radiation detection for homeland security applications. The radiation detection technology was recently renamed Gamma Pix and spun out in a separate company called Image Insight Inc. in 2011. Pre-commercial business units have been established for gas turbine monitoring (TurboSense), alternative energy (Next Generation Energy), and technology enhanced science education (Science in Motion). The R&D for the latter activity was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education.

AFR was a winner of the coveted Small Business Administration's 2000 Tibbetts Award for commercialization of innovative technologies. In addition, AFR has been a six-time winner of the R&D 100 Award, for developing one of the 100 most technologically significant new products of the year. AFR today supplies its services to leading industrial and academic clients throughout the world.  AFR's core areas of expertise include: R&D Services, Energy Consulting, Clean Energy & Carbon Materials, Combustion Monitoring & Control, and Electronic Materials.