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There's federal money available to help anyone who wants to do small business innovation research that could have the potential for commercialization in the future. This is a highly competitive program but it can be lucrative, with start-up funding of nearly $1 million per business available from the government to promote homegrown R&D. Start with the Small Business Administration web site (http://www.sba.gov) and look for links to the SBIR program. You need to be American-owned, have less than 500 employees and meet other stringent qualifications.