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Published on May 25th, 2012 | by Zachary Shahan


Liquid Metal Battery Startup from MIT’s Don Sadoway Gets $15-Million Boost, Investments from Khosla Ventures, Bill Gates, & Total

May 25th, 2012 by  

“Professor Donald Sadoway and Materials Processing Center Research Affiliate David Bradwell observe one of their small test batteries in the lab. The battery itself is inside the heavily insulated metal cylinder at center, which heats it to 700 degrees Celsius.” (Photo: Patrick Gillooly; Source: MIT)

We’ve written about Don Sadoway’s liquid batteries, a potential breakthrough energy storage solution that could help make renewable energy explode even more than it already is, and shared a TED talk of Sadoway discussing the technology. The latest news in this story is that Sadoway’s team has received $15 million more of investment, including money from world-famous cleantech investor Vinod Khosla’s firm Khosla Ventures.

“Until we find a technology that is low-cost, highly scalable, and long-lasting, ubiquitous grid storage won’t be possible,” Andrew Chung of Khosla Ventures said. “The all-liquid battery’s elegant materials design and simple assembly process makes it the best chemical option we’ve seen for storing the grid at massive scale.”

Liquid Metal Battery Corporation (LMBC), the name of the startup, received its next round of funding, $15 million, from Khosla Ventures, Bill Gates and energy company Total.

The startup has reportedly moved from the R&D stage to the commercialization stage (for large-scale grid implementation).

Good news.

Read more at: Sadoway’s MIT Liquid Metal Battery Startup Adds $15M and Khosla Ventures as Investor.

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About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species) with the power of the word. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor, but he's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession and Solar Love. Zach is recognized globally as a solar energy, electric car, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, and Canada. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in. But he offers no professional investment advice and would rather not be responsible for you losing money, so don't jump to conclusions.

  • Bob_Wallace

    This battery appears to be excellent for its intended purpose – large scale grid storage.

    This battery is not intended to be used in your hearing aid.

  • Omharisai

    Excellent innovation. Liquid metal batteries may help boost the storage capacity of current and future solar power farms.

  • Luke

    Fantastic News! The outreach that TED provided has once again allowed new technology to be developed and move forward. Hopefully we’ll see these batteries deployed in a few years!

    (I’m imagining shipping container size batteries appearing at solar and wind farms)!

  • Matt

    Look forward to when they get to the point of pricing these out. What with Texas selling electric for $0.00 at night. If you could price out a home size unit, there is a big market there. Yes the big boys would want it to, but the power company could get it users to create the storage base for it.

  • Captivation

    I get my liquid batteries at the beer store. But on a serious note, methanol and ethanol seem to be seriously underrated as energy stores. They become liquid batteries the moment you put them in a fuel cell.

    • Chris

      pipe dream mate, Thorium reacotr (LFTR) and some of these batteries and you could walk away form the power grid altogether,

      • Captivation

        Can’t be that much of a pipe dream since methanol fuel cells are already available as commercial products and methanol fuel is cheaper than gasoline.  But the beauty of an energy democracy is that we will all get to choose.  For me it might be a few solar panels.  For you, an off grid Thorium reactor in the back yard.  The only thing we can’t allow is the continued use of fossil fuels.  

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