A Guide for Inventors at INL — 2017 23 NanoSteel’s Super-strong Steel Materials The ever-changing demands of modern technologies drive a need for metal alloys with specific novel prop- erties. In 1996, INL researcher Daniel Branagan discovered a new type of nanostructured steel material, which became the basis for a different class of steel. This material has been used to provide solutions addressing needs in a wide range of industries. After demonstrating the technology at the lab scale, funding from the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) helped advance the process. In 2002, NanoSteel formed as a successful startup company. It is focused on engineering compelling nano-structure steel solutions for industry’s most difficult problems. Based on the foundation of its original surface coating technology, NanoSteel created progressive generations of iron-based alloys, including foils, powder metals, and sheet steel. Surface technology has been used in extreme wear and corrosion environments such as power generation, mining and aggregates, concrete and cement, and oil and gas. NanoSteel subsequently grew that surface coat- ings group to a point where it was licensed to Lincoln Electric in 2014. NanoSteel is also developing metal powders for additive manufacturing, including tool steels and wear resistant steels. 5D Robotics -- Improving Robot Autonomy Electronics and robotics are becoming smarter and smarter at a rapid pace, and INL-based tech- nology continues to contribute to the development of more intelligent equipment. What began as the Autonomous Real-time Threat- Hunting Robot (ARTHR), and evolved to the Robot Intelligence Kernel (RIK), has become a spinoff company called 5D Robotics. Based on INL-developed technology, 5D Robotics offers sophisticated technology to make robotic applications better, safer and more autonomous. ARTHR was developed at INL in early 2000 by David Brue- mmer. It was designed to equip a variety of robots with the “brains” to detect threats such as explosive devices, radioactive material, land mines and hazardous chemicals. ARTHR was a plug-and-play intelligence system that could be loaded onto commercially available robots. The system enabled the robots to act more autonomously, freeing the user to focus on threat detection instead of robot operation. The robots could be controlled by traditional command center units, lightweight laptops or even Wii™ gaming remotes. Common Startup Company Questions What is a startup company? When an INL employee commercializes a technology developed at INL, the method is described as spinning out or starting up a company. Specifically, the term startup is used in this guide when INL is licensing to: • a INL employee, • a former INL employee who left the laboratory with the intention of commercializing the technology, or • a new entity that is owned by, partially owned by, or employs an INL employee or an INL employee who left the laboratory with the intention of commercializing the technology. What role does the inventor play in the startup company? The inventor usually serves as a consultant or adviser to the new company.That role may change as the company develops. However, much more time is required early in the process of establishing the company. What support does INL provide to startups? INL’sTechnology Based Economic Development specialist can help connect entrepreneurs to regional resources to support the development of new businesses commercializing INL IP. Who decides whether to form a startup? Inventors and TD work jointly to decide if establishing a new company is the preferred commercialization path.TD can assist inventors in meeting investors, consultants and entrepreneurs and in accessing other resources.