Monday, July 11, 2005

BRC 33: Harris Ueng: Air-powered Battery

Harris' bio is below.

While micro fuel-cells have been bannered about the past several years as the next up-and-coming thing in portable energy storage, batteries that utilize air as part of their chemical reaction to release stored power have been quietly brewing in the backrooms of researchers and entrepreneurs.

These batteries are Zinc-Air batteries. The have extremely high power capacity compared to today’s Li-ion batteries used in laptops, while being considerably lighter due to the use of atmospheric air as one of the key chemicals for the reaction. Not only are these rechargeable batteries multi-use with long reuse lifespan, but they are considerably less toxic in disposal compared to their nickel-cadmium and lithium-ion brethren.

This technology has definitely captured the attention of both the corporate world and the venture capital world. Toshiba already provides zinc-air batteries in various applications, such as powering hearing aids.

On the venture front, ReVolt Technology AS just received funding last month to the tune of approximately US$8.4 million to mass produce zinc-air batteries utilizing a lower-cost production method that is toxin-free in nature.

Who says we can’t clean the world and power it, too?

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