Thursday, April 17, 2014 · 5:49 a.m.

The Company Lab announces new focus for 2014 Gig Tank

3-D printing, health care, smart grid development added to program

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Leaders with The Company Lab announced Thursday that the 2014 Gig Tank event will have a different focus. 

Additive manufacturing (3-D printing), health care and smart grid development will be the three focus areas of the annual event, which is an entrepreneurial accelerator that leverages the city's fiber network to build next-generation business models.

Mike Bradshaw, executive director of CO.LAB, said in a prepared statement:

Chattanooga is a hub for manufacturing and home to the nation’s most advanced smart grid network. Our foothold in these areas creates an entirely new domain of possibilities when combined with our gigabit Internet service.

For startups in the health care industry, Chattanooga’s broadband opens new territory for developing next-generation telemedicine and medical imagery applications. For those exploring applications in advanced manufacturing and smart grid technologies, we offer a robust network of experts and industry contacts.

This is an especially valuable resource to startups looking to pilot new business applications in active, networked industry settings.

CO.LAB will coordinate the additive manufacturing portion, as well as the smart grid track, with support from EPB.

ProjectLift will serve as a lead facilitator for the health care track. 

UTC will provide housing for all Gig Tank teams, according to a news release. 

The program takes place each summer between May and August and is hosted by CO.LAB.

Applications for the 2014 accelerator will open Jan. 15 and close March 14. 

Partnerships with local manufacturers will be key to the Gig Tank experience, especially among those interested in exploring opportunities related to 3-D printing, according to the news release. 

With the addition of the additive manufacturing track, Gig Tank becomes the nation's first startup accelerator to offer a program focused on launching 3-D printing applications in the conventional manufacturing space. 

The Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has already agreed to support this process by providing Gig Tank teams access to its state-of-the-art additive manufacturing equipment. 

Chattanooga State Community College will also contribute resources to support the additive manufacturing track.

For more information about Gig Tank, click here. For information about becoming a Gig Tank partner, mentor or program participant, click here.

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