Chromatically Responsive Technologies

Request Number REQ6370982
Due Date March 23, 2018
Request for Proposal Details
RFP Title
Chromatically Responsive Technologies
RFP Description

NineSigma, representing a North American design and engineering firm, seeks a variety of technologies capable of changing color when exposed to an external stimulus. Alternatively, the client is interested in connecting with individuals who possess significant expertise in this technology space for compensated consultation.


NineSigma’s client produces a variety of viscous gel formulations. When utilized, these compounds (or mixtures of compounds) are exposed to a variety of potential stimuli, including:
  • Light (both natural and artificial)
  • Mechanical pressure
  • Vibration
  • Ultrasound
  • Electrical currents (DC)
  • Atmospheric gases at atmospheric pressures
  • Chemical reactions
  • Osmotic change
  • Ion addition
The client desires the ability to incorporate a color changing ability to these gel formulations to convey information to the user. This information includes but is not limited to: indication of proper mixing, duration of application, or exposure to electric current, mechanical pressure, vibration, or other energy sources.
NineSigma’s client is interested in all technologies that provide a color change, such as
  • Chemiluminescence
  • Triboluminescence
  • Photoluminescence
  • Mechanochromic luminescence
  • Thermoluminescence
  • Sonoluminescence
Technologies that provide a luminescent property are of greater interest than technologies that exhibit color variability in response to changes in pH. 
The color change can be brief (for example: only when in the presence of electric current) or permanent (for example: as the result of mechanical pressure). 
Anticipated Project Phases or Project Plan
Phase 1 – Evaluation of proposed technologies
  • To be completed: Q2 2018
Phase 2 – Prototyping of selected technologies
  • Technologies of interest will be evaluated in the client’s R&D facility to determine pathway to commercialization
  • To be completed: Q2/Q3 2018
Phase 3 – Integration/Licensing/Funding of proposed technologies
  • Finalization of technology integration in to client’s product(s)
  • To be completed: Q4 2018
Phase 4 – Commercial release
  • 2019/2020
Criteria for Moving from Phase 1 to Phase 2
Client will consider for advancement an approach that meets performance criteria with acceptable economics and pathway to commercialization.
Conceptual approaches are of interest with sufficient evidence of a pathway to commercialization.
The client is also interested in connecting with individuals with compelling experience and expertise in this field. These individuals have the potential to act as subject matter experts, advising the client on the development, implementation, or commercialization of proposed technologies.

Key Success Criteria

  • Provide a visible color change:
    • All colors of interest
  • React to one (or more) of the following stimuli:
    • Light
    • Pressure
    • Electric current
    • Vibration
    • Ultrasound
    • Chemical reactions
  • Be functional when blended with gel formulation(s)
  • Be safe for human exposure
  • Non-animal origin preferred
    • Recombinant origins acceptable
  • Acceptable production timelines and costs


Possible Approaches

Possible approaches might include, but are not limited to:
  • Dye encapsulation
  • Electrochromic materials
  • Thermochromic materials
  • Photochromic materials
  • Halochromic materials
  • Photoluminescent materials


Approaches not of interest

  • Technologies that cannot be incorporated into gel compounds
  • Technologies with unacceptable toxicity profiles


Preferred Collaboration types
  • Joint Development
  • Contract Research
  • Contract Analysis and Testing
  • Technology Licensing
  • Technology Acquisition
  • Consulting
  • Supply Agreement
  • To Be Negotiated
Items to be submitted

If you are interested in submitting a response to this project, please access the Response Form.


You may submit supplemental files in addition to your completed response form.


Appropriate responses will use the response form and address the following:

  • Non-confidential description of proposed technology and working principle
  • Availability of technical data including:
    • Initial appearance
    • Final color(s)
    • Reaction time
    • Duration
    • Intensity
    • Visibility conditions:
      • Indoor vs outdoor
      • Home vs office
    • Toxicity 
    • Regulatory limitations
  • Technical maturity of the approach (concept, reduced to practice, prototype, ready to commercialize, ready to implement, commercialized)
  • Pathway to commercial scale including timing, estimated budget, and capacity for manufacture
  • Estimated unit cost of technology
  • Position on intellectual property including patent references
  • Desired relationship with sponsor
  • Team description and related experience



Other Request information includes:



Responses from companies (small to large), academic researchers, other research institutes, consultants, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, or inventors are welcome. For example:


You represent a company or university that has demonstrated a proof of concept.

You represent a company or university that has reduced method to practice at lab scale.

You represent a company or university that has developed a method for use at pilot scale.

You represent a company or university that has demonstrated a method ready for implementation at industrial scale.

You represent a technology transfer agency that represents an inventor or technology holder who can demonstrate an approach to address the request.

You represent a university research department that has a bench-scale demonstration ready to adapt.

You represent a university research department that has an undeveloped pathway with a high probability of success.



Area of Interest
Request Priority