Business Resource Center

Technology Commercialization

The presence of three national laboratories, three research universities, state-supported programs, and incentives for technology-based businesses in New Mexico has created a nurting environment for technology commercialization in the state. Technology can be licensed from Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories as well as from the University of New Mexico, New Mexico State University, and New Mexico Tech through their corresponding technology transfer offices which are described below. 

Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRADAs) allow collaboration between federal government and non-federal partners in order to optimize resources, share technical expertise and intellectual property, and facilitate rapid commercialization of federally-developed technology. Educational Partnership Agreements (EPAs) are formed between federal agencies and educational institutions to provide technology assistance. The national laboratories make use of such agreements. Each institution can be contacted for more details. 

Programs that support development of technology at minimal to no cost are also available in the state, providing entrepreneurs with the expertise of laboratory researchers and scientists. These programs also offer quality control and manufacturing assistance. Finally, state tax credits have been established to promote the use of New Mexico's technology resources by incentivizing in-state R&D activities and investment. 

New Mexico's technological strengths include:

  • Aerospace and Aviation
  • Bio-Technologies and Healthcare
  • Energy, Environment, and Water 
  • Information Technology and Software
  • Nano-Technologies and Microelectronic

Finding the Technology

Technology can be licensed through national laboratories and universities in the state. See below for a description of each insitution and their specialties.

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SNL has core capabilities in 4 broad areas:

  • Systems engineering and integration
  • High-performance computing and modeling and simulation
  • Extreme-environment testing at unique facilities
  • Nanotechnologies and microsystems

Active collaborations with other government agencies, industry, and academic institutions provide support to these areas of research and strengthen the activities of SNL’s 7 research foundations:

  • Bioscience 
  • Computing and information science
  • Engineering science
  • Geoscience
  • Materials science
  • Nanodevices and microsystems
  • Radiation effects and high energy density science

Interaction with academic and business leaders aims to transform essential research and discovery activities into invention, innovation, entrepreneurship, economic opportunity and public benefit. One of the ways this manifests is in SNL’s 22 Technology Deployment Centers. For information on licensing technology from SNL, visit the Licensing and Technology Transfer Department

LANL’s mission is national security, with a focus on nuclear nonproliferation and border security, energy and infrastructure security, and countermeasures to nuclear and biological terrorist threats. LANL’s fundamental scientific focus is on:

  • High-energy and applied physics and theory
  • High-performance computing
  • Dynamic and energetic materials science
  • Superconductivity
  • Quantum information
  • Advanced materials
  • Bioinformatics
  • Theoretical and computational biology
  • Chemistry
  • Earth and environmental science
  • Alternative energy systems
  • Engineering sciences and applications

Contact the Richard P. Feynman Center for Innovation for more information on licensing technology from LANL. 

AFRL at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque operates two of the Air Force’s seven technical directorates: Directed Energy and Space Vehicles.

The Directed Energy Directorate is the Air Force's center of expertise for directed energy and optical technologies, with a focus in four core technical competencies:

  • Laser systems
  • High power electromagnetics
  • Weapons modeling and simulation
  • Directed energy and electro-optics for space superiority

The Space Vehicles Directorate is comprised of three distinct divisions:

  • Battleship environment
  • Spacecraft technology
  • Integrated experiments and evaluation

For more information on technology from AFRL, contact their Tech Engagement Team

The University of New Mexico (UNM) has Research Centers and Institutes including:

  • Health Sciences Center
  • ARTS Lab
  • Institute for Astrophysics
  • New Mexico Center for Particle Physics
  • Center for High Technology Materials
  • Center for Micro-Engineered Materials
  • Center for Advanced Research Computing

Intellectual property and technology commercialization is facilitated by STC.UNM.

New Mexico State University (NMSU) conducts research in nine areas:

  • Animal and range science
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular biology and genetics
  • Computer science and computer and electrical engineering
  • Energy and biofuels
  • Environment and ecology
  • Medical and health sciences
  • Plant and soil sciences
  • Space and water

To learn more about licensing technologies, contact the Arrowhead Center.

NMT is a nationally-recognized research university with the following research departments:

  • Energetic Materials Research and Testing Center
  • Institute for Complex Additive Systems Analysis
  • Institute for Engineering Research and Applications
  • Magdalena Ridge Observatory
  • MicroElectronics Testing and Technology Obsolescence Program
  • Optical Surface Technologies
  • Petroleum Recovery Research Center
  • Research and Support Center for Applied Mathematical Modeling

Contact the Center for Leadership in Technology Commercialization for tech transfer opportunities.

Resources for Technology-Based Businesses

Technology business owners will find valuable resources and programs available in New Mexico. Below are some that relate to reasearch and development, manufacturing, product testing, and more. They are designed to allow technology entrepreneurs access to and collaboration with the top science and technology experts in the state.

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The SBIR Progam urges small businesses to participate in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) with the objective of commercialization. The program is competitive and requires an application, which can be awarded a monetary prize for the purpose of conducting the research outlined in the application.‚Äč

The New Mexico Small Business Assistance (NMSBA) Program offers assistance to New Mexico small businesses with a technical challenge that requires special expertise can "borrow" scientists or engineers from Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories. Such projects include testing, design consultation, and access to special equipment or facilities.

Other types of technical assistance may be provided through the New Mexico Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NMMEP), the Center for Support of Economic Development (CSED) Small Business Assistance Program at UNM Anderson School of Management (offered through the Management of Technology [MOT] concentration), the Department of Management at New Mexico Tech, and the Arrowhead Technology Incubator at New Mexico State University.

Small businesses located in Bernalillo County can receive up to $10,000 in technical assistance per year, while businesses in rural counties can receive up to $20,000. Each lab is eligible for a state tax credit of $2.4 million to assist New Mexico small businesses. The small business must be for-profit, located in New Mexico, U.S.-owned and operated, and must pay gross receipts tax to the State of New Mexico.

NMMEP is an assistance center that works toward increasing NM small and mid-sized companies’ competitiveness. Areas of expertise include: results-driven methodologies, best practices, and innovative technologies designed to increase profitability. They offer comprehensive programs and services in collaboration with government, not-for-profit, and industry resources.

CINT is a national user facility devoted to establishing the scientific principles that govern the design, performance, and integration of nanoscale materials. The Center is jointly operated by Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories, with the Core Facility located at Sandia, and the Gateway Facility located at Los Alamos. 

CINT focuses on four scientific areas:

  • Nanophotonics and optical nanomaterials
  • Nanoscale electronics and mechanics
  • Soft, biological, and composite nanomaterials
  • Theory and simulation of nanoscale phenomena

The New Mexico Consortium (NMC) was established to strengthen research that is in the national interest and to increase the role of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in science, education, and regional economic development. A nonprofit formed by the three New Mexico research universities, NMC promotes collaboration among academia, industry, and research.

NMC’s science initiatives include:

  • Plant biology
  • Biomedical technology and engineering
  • Advanced computing
  • Modeling and analysis

NMC takes pride in the following core capabilities:

  • PRObE, a supercomputing facility (funded by the National Science Foundation)
  • The ability to perform cross-disciplinary research capable of fully characterizing cell function
  • A biological laboratory equipped with wet lab facilities, specialized laboratories, a Photobioreactor Matrix, and a 4,000 square foot research greenhouse

The Venture Acceleration Fund (VAF), a division of Los Alamos Connect, offers new technology-based and manufacturing companies the chance to compete for funding. The VAF targets companies who are too new for bank loans and too early for equity financing to gain traction and contribute to New Mexico’s economy.

STC.UNM, along with the UNM Foundation, established the STC.UNM Co-Investment Fund to further the commercialization of UNM-based technologies. The $1 million fund awards investment to companies utilizing UNM technologies, which are then matched with outside capital from venture capitalists or angel investors. Funding is generally given to companies heading into a next stage in development.

Incentives for Technology Commercialization

New Mexico realizes the potential of technology-based companies by offering incentives for entrepreneurs to build their businesses here in the state.

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Administered by the NM Taxation & Revenue Department

A taxpayer who conducts qualified research and development at a facility in New Mexico is allowed a basic tax credit equal to four percent (4%) of qualified expenditures, and an additional four percent (4%) credit toward income tax liability by raising its in-state payroll $75,000 for every $1 million in qualified expenditures claimed. The tax credit doubles for expenditures in facilities located in rural New Mexico (as defined for this tax credit as anywhere outside Rio Rancho or more than 3 miles outside Bernalillo, Dona Ana, San Juan or Santa Fe counties).

The taxpayer claims the credit within one year following the end of the year in which the expenditure was made. The credit amount is applied against the taxpayer’s state gross receipts, compensating and withholding liabilities until the credit is exhausted.

Eligible Uses 

  1. Expenditures: Includes a wide range of non-reimbursed expenses such as payroll, consultants and contractors performing work in New Mexico, software, equipment, technical manuals, rent, and operating expenses of facilities. 
  2. Research: Must be technological in nature and constitute elements of a process of experimentation leading to new or improved function, performance or reliability (not cosmetic, style). 
  3. Facility: A building or group, with land and machinery, equipment and other real or personal property used in connection with the operation of the facility; excludes national labs.

Download Application and Claim Form

Administered by NM Economic Development Department.

A taxpayer who files a New Mexico income tax return and who is a “qualified investor” may take a tax credit of up to $25,000 (25% of a qualified investment of not more than $100,000) for an investment made in a New Mexico company that is engaging in high-technology research or manufacturing. The taxpayer may claim the angel investment credit for up to two qualified investments in a taxable year, provided that each investment is in a different qualified business. Any portion of the tax credit remaining unused at the end of the taxpayer’s taxable year may be carried forward for three consecutive years.

Download information and claim form: