Bloomberg New Energy Finance announced the winners of its 2018 New Energy Pioneers award this week at its annual Future of Energy Summit in New York City, which is given to companies deemed to be leading the way in clean energy technologies and business transformation.
The Future of Energy Summit runs from April 9 to 10, and has already seen headlines made due to US Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s comments stating that his department does not necessarily consider it “most appropriate” to declare a power grid emergency to save US electricity utility FirstEnergy, which declared for bankruptcy earlier this month.
As part of each Summit, however, Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) announces its New Energy Pioneers, which are “innovators that are revolutionizing the energy, transport, and technology sectors.” The awards are determined by an independent panel of industry experts as well as analysts and specialists from BNEF, and narrow down a list of 160 applications from nearly 50 countries around the world. This year, BNEF’s winners were deemed to be innovators in response “to changes and disruption in the energy system, and are pursuing new opportunities in areas as diverse as storage, EV charging, digitalization, heat recovery, and blockchain.”
“This year, we were delighted to receive a record number of strong candidates for the New Energy Pioneers program, drawn from 47 different countries,” said Michael Wilshire, selection committee chair and head of strategy at Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “We have seen a sharp uptick in the number of applicants that use digital technologies and software to help make the electricity system more resilient, flexible and efficient – all critical elements of a more decentralized and renewable energy system.”
“Emerging technologies such as machine learning and blockchain are being used to improve decision making and to make operations more efficient, as well as to create new capabilities, such as peer-to-peer energy trading and the ability to manage complex sets of distributed assets,” Wilshire continued. “Transport is being transformed, with two of this year’s Pioneers developing infrastructure, software, and services to support the rollout of electric vehicles. And we continue to see strong innovation in other areas, such as storage and energy in developing markets.”
The 2018 New Energy Pioneers are:
- Advanced Microgrid Solutions (US) designs, develops, and manages portfolios of distributed energy resources providing dynamic grid management and value to wholesale markets.
- Bidgely (US) is a load disaggregation company that uses machine learning and data analytics to process smart meter data and provide its users with insights about their energy consumption.
- BURN (Kenya) has designed and manufactured over 370,000 clean cook stoves, improving both air quality and access to power for low-income households.
- Climeon (Sweden) has commercialized the extraction of electricity from low-temperature heat (70-120 degrees Celsius), used in the context of waste heat or geothermal power.
- Enbala (US) operates a real-time energy-balancing platform creating controllable and dispatchable energy resources from flexible loads, energy storage and renewable energy sources.
- Greenlots (US) is a hardware-agnostic provider of electric vehicle network management software and services. These give utilities, cities, communities and automakers the ability to control grid loads through smart charging and demand response.
- Limejump (U.K.) is a demand response energy technology company and the largest virtual power plant operator in the U.K., using proprietary software to aggregate and manage a distributed fleet of flexible assets.
- LO3 Energy (US) is an early mover in peer-to-peer energy trading using blockchain technology, and is developing other applications for its blockchain platform.
- SaltX (Sweden) is an innovator in storing heat chemically, using a proprietary salt-based technology. This uses a nano coating and graphene to prevent salt crystals from growing when energy is stored, greatly improving the number of storage cycles whilst also reducing corrosion.
- WiTricty (US) has developed wireless charging through magnetic resonance technology, allowing high-efficiency power transfer for the electric vehicle industry.
“We are very encouraged by the innovation, determination and creativity shown by these Pioneers and by the potential that they have to help transform the energy and transport systems,” Wilshire concluded. “We are, as ever, very grateful to our external judges on the selection committee who had the challenge of choosing ten winners from a strong pool of entrants.”