Published on October 18th, 2012 | by Nicholas Brown


NYSERDA Awards $2M to 8 Projects to Develop Energy Storage Technology

October 18th, 2012 by  

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has awarded $2 million to eight companies, it announced this week. Each company received $250,000 to facilitate the development of working prototypes of a variety of energy storage technologies. The recipients are all members of the NY Battery and Energy Storage Technology (NY-BEST) Consortium.

This initiative is for technologies that are proven to be feasible.

The organizations and researchers that received the funding are:

  1. Custom Electronics Inc, which is to develop an electrolytic graphene capacitor to back up the electricity grid during power shortages, voltage spikes, and momentary electricity interruptions.
  2. E2TAC, which is to develop lithium-ion capacitors for purposes ranging from hybrid vehicles to power electronics.
  3. GE Energy Storage, which is to work with Raymond Corp. of Greene to develop and electric forklift for use in freezer houses, and it will be equipped with their Durathon Sodium-Halide batteries. Sodium is a very abundant mineral which can be obtained from even seawater. 70% of the earth’s surface is covered in water, and 96% of all water on earth is saline.
  4. Paper Battery Co., which is to develop a production prototype of its flexible ultracapacitor for energy storage in computer UPS (Uninterruptable Power Supply) systems.
  5. Ioxus Inc, which will continue the development of its supercapacitors (ultracapacitors or ELDC).
  6. Prismet Precision Materials (Ithaca) — it intends to lower the cost of the manufacturing key raw materials required for lithium-ion batteries.
  7. Graphene Devices, Ltd — it intends to develop powerful graphene-based supercapacitors with three times the energy density of current commercial devices at the same cost.
  8. Urban Electric Power — it intends to store 1 MWh of energy  using a “flow-assisted” zinc battery which can power up to 40 homes for a day. It takes one house an entire month to use a MWh of electricity. This energy storage system is intended to augment electricity supply when demand spikes during peak hours. This project is being developed with the CUNY Energy Institute.


I’m not surprised that graphene has garnered faith, because it has demonstrated a combination of qualities that no other technology or material can amount to — it has the ability to collect sunlight and convert it into electricity; it has the ability to store energy; it’s extremely lightweight; its strength exceeds that of steel by far; it isn’t metal, so it does not rust; it is malleable; it conducts electricity as well as copper; it conducts heat as well as aluminium; and finally, it was used to construct the fastest transistor in the world — it is an impressive semiconductor.

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About the Author

writes on CleanTechnica, Gas2, Kleef&Co, and Green Building Elements. He has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, and geography. His website is:

  • JDH

    Hard to understand why all of these capacitor projects are classified as Energy storage. Capacitors only hold enough electrons for a few seconds and are really power assist devices. Nothing new here in terms of ENERGY storage. The last round of ARRA funding provided plenty of data on Z/Br flow battery demo’s, so its hard to see how this will advance the market.

    • Altair IV

      Supercapacitors are different in some ways from regular capacitors; falling somewhere between them and batteries. They aren’t be suitable for long-term storage, but are useful for various fast-cycling, short-term storage situations, often in combination with regular rechargeable batteries.

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