A Pittsburgh company that makes systems for medium to heavy-duty vehicles like dump truck and garbage trucks to greatly reduce greenhouse gases is planning to open an operation in the Binghamton area after landing the $1-million grand prize in the New York State 76West Clean Energy Competition.

Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News

Optimus Technology was awarded the top prize by New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul during ceremonies September 25 at Binghamton University.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, or “NYSERDA” this year received 169 applications from 14 countries and 24 states for the competition.  18 semi-finalists were chosen to give a two-day pitch at Binghamton University before the six winners were chosen.

In addition to the million dollar top prize, a half-million dollars was awarded to Radical Plastics of Marblehead, Massachusetts for its biodegradable plastic mulch and $250,000 prizes were awarded to Cambridge Crops of Sommerville, Massachusetts, Carbon Upcycling Technologies of Calgary, Canada, CleanFiber of Buffalo, New York and ProsumerGrid of Atlanta, Georgia.

The Lieutenant Governor also announced that the program, which started in 2016 as a four-year, $20-million competition will be continuing.  Hochul says 76West is being extended another four years with an additional $20-million being put into the program to advance the clean energy industry in the Southern Tier.

As terms of the competition, companies entering have to either move to the Southern Tier or establish a direct connection with the region’s economy such as job development or supply-lines.