MassCEC's Catalyst and Diversity in Cleantech - Early-Stage (DICES) Programs provide grants of up to $65,000 to researchers and early-stage companies looking to demonstrate initial prototypes of their clean energy technologies. 

This program is currently CLOSED and will re-open in August. 

Eligible applicants must be either a principal Investigator (“PI”) at a Massachusetts-based nonprofit research institution or a Massachusetts-based early stage clean energy company with no more than $1 million in combined financing, grant funding and revenues within the past 5 years and have four or fewer full-time equivalent employees. Student teams with a faculty member or researcher who will act as the PI and will be responsible for the management of the grant and institution’s reporting requirement are also eligible to apply. 

In addition to the above eligibility criteria, applicants to the DICES Program must verify they are eligible as a woman - or minority- owned startup. See Section V in the RFP.

This program is currently CLOSED and will re-open in August. 

For reference only, please see the the following on full program details:

The Spring 2022 Catalyst & DICES RFP

To apply, please visit the online application portal and submit all of the required materials. 

  • To apply via the online application portal, you will be prompted to create an account. 
  • You are able to start an application, save it, and return to it later. 
  • Once you submit, you are unable to edit it. 

Get tips on applying by watching our February 2022 webinar recording, or view the slides.

For any questions, please email


The Programs are jointly administered by MassCEC and MassVentures with the primary intent of stimulating the commercialization of clean energy technologies developed in the Commonwealth. Awarded funds are used to demonstrate the feasibility of technologies in specific industry applications in order to obtain increased industry and investor interest. Recipients must use funding for projects that move their technologies towards commercialization.  This includes gathering initial data to demonstrate proof of concept, how the technology compares to existing technologies and competitive advantages of the technology or to develop a prototype for the technology.

Key Goals:

Advance innovation: Provide early-stage, clean energy researchers and startup companies with grant awards and business mentoring to transform new discoveries from the research stage into commercially viable technologies.

Recent Awardees:

Round 23 Awardees
(Spring 2021)
Project Location
Vespr Solar, Inc
Wind-Resilient, Rapid Install PV Module Attachment Methods Somerville 
Yard Stick PBC
Rapid, in situ Spectral Measurement of Soil Carbon Stocks
PT Technologies LLC
PT Panel: A prefabricated High-Performance Envelope Retrofit  Boston
The University of Massachusetts Amherst
An Integrated Wave Energy Stabilizer for Floating Wind Turbines
Kwiksulate, Inc
Kwiksulate DIY Foam Insulation
Carbon Bioenergy, Inc
Carbon Dioxide Reduction into Chemicals and Fuels Using Organic Waste as a Catalyst in a New Reactor System 
Thermal Solutions, Inc
Development of Firebrick Resistance-Heated Energy Storage for Industrial heat Applications and Round-Trip Electricity Storage  Somerville
Round 22 Awardees
(Fall 2020)
Harvard University 
A High Performance Solid-State Battery with Lithium Metal Anode for Electrical Vehicles Cambridge
Ithaca Clean Energy, Ltd
AI Powered Software for Offshore Wind Farms Plymouth 
Lydian Labs, Inc. 
Catalysts for the Electrification and Decarbonization of the Chemicals Industry Somerville 
Northeastern University 
Low-cost Power Electronics for Electric Vehicles Boston 
Sol Clarity 
Field Trials for Self-Cleaning Solar Power Auburndale
SYSO Technologies Virtual Network Operations Center (VNOC) Cambridge 
Worcester Polytechnic Institute 
Cloud Motion Vector System (CMVS) to Monitor and Predict Output Power of a Photovoltaic (PV) System in Real-Time Worcester 

























Since the program began, Catalyst has awarded over $6.3 million to 124 projects that have gone on to raise more than $244 million in follow-on funding and resulted in 112 new pieces of intellectual property applications (IP). One out of every 4 university awardees has created a new company.

There are several resources available to startups in Massachusetts, in addition to MassCEC grants. If your company is interested in learning more about the region's accelerators and incubators, read more here. 


Responses to questions submitted during the spring 2022 RFP round:

Does my company have to be registered in Massachusetts to be considered for the funding opportunity?

No, your company does not have to be registered in MA to be eligible. However, you do need to be based in Massachusetts and meet the other applicant eligibility criteria outlined in the RFP.

Is there a minimum employee requirement?

There is no minimum employee requirement. However, there is a maximum employee requirement, as stated in section VI in the RFP.

Do I need an actual working prototype to be eligible?  

No, you do not need a working prototype at this stage. The proposed technology must fall under TRL 2-4 and be eligible under the program otherwise.

How many awardees will be getting the grant (any specific number)? When the website shows two rounds, does it mean twice in the same year or it can be different years?

See Section I, Summary in the RFP. “In this solicitation, MassCEC intends to award up to Sixty-Five Thousand Dollars ($65,000) in grant funding per project to a maximum of nine (9) total researchers and/or early-stage companies developing clean energy technologies. MassCEC seeks to award up to seven (7) qualifying cleantech projects (see Section VI) under the Catalyst Program. • Under Catalyst’s associated DICES Program, MassCEC will award up to two (2) additional qualifying cleantech projects (see Sections V and VI for additional information).”

Eligible certified women - does this mean the program is only applicable for women innovators?

Under the DICES program, only woman and minority certified businesses are eligible. Under Catalyst, all are eligible. These programs run in parallel under the same solicitation. Applicants select which program they are applying to when they submit their application.

How can I tell if I am eligible as a minority?

See Section V. of the RFP for a link to the 30-second self-assessment in order to determine if you are eligible for the minority certification for DICES.

Is SDO certification required before applying for funding, or can the applicant apply once he/she has been awarded with the funding?

See Section V of the RFP for the steps. You do not need to be certified prior to applying. 

Are Catalyst and DICES different programs?

See Section I of the RFP for description. The programs are operating in parallel and are both in the same RFP, the only difference is the applicant eligibility type.

What qualifies as having a “clean energy impact”?

The technology must show a clear path to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Examples include reducing cost or improving the performance or efficiency of carbon-free generation.

Does geothermal fall under the list of eligible renewable energy technologies?


How precise do I need to be when calculating my carbon footprint?

As precise as possible. We don’t require a lifecycle analysis or anything of that magnitude, but we do expect you to do the best you can and be clear about your sources.