U.S. Government & “Big Oil” Collaborate on Renewables

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is located in Golden, Colorado and specializes in renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. The facility is funded through the United States Department of Energy (DOE). Royal Dutch Shell (Shell) is a multinational energy company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands and incorporated in the United Kingdom. Shell is one of the largest oil and gas companies in the world, which are commonly called “big oil.”

NREL and Shell are now collaborating to provide financial resources, state-of-the-art facilities and world-class technical experts to start-up companies working on emerging clean energy technologies. The multiyear, multi-million dollar program will marry the expertise of NREL and Shell scientists with the innovation of entrepreneurs. This assistance is designed to help startups de-risk and accelerate emerging technologies on their path to market.

The first four companies selected for this program are as follows:

1. Antora Energy, located in Freemont, California is building large batteries for the power grid at remarkably low costs using modified solar panels to efficiently change heat to electricity. This technology will both improve grid resiliency and provide long-duration energy storage at approximately five percent the cost of conventional batteries.

2. e-Zn, located in Toronto, Canada has developed a cost-effective and flexible, zinc-based energy storage system. The energy storage system can be deployed in any geographic setting and can provide energy for hours, days or weeks.

3. Electrical Grid Monitoring, located in Rosh Haayin, Israel has developed a system to secure real-time communications and perform self-learning analytics on an entire power grid. The real-time data can provide insight in how to management and optimize the power grid.

4. Feasible Inc, located in Emeryville, California is developing a technology platform that uses sound waves and data analytics to deliver insights about batteries. The technology will enable widespread adoption of clean energy sources by improving the performance and safety of battery packs and decreasing their lifetime cost.

Each of the aforementioned companies will receive up to U.S. $250,000 in funding to aid in development and demonstration of their technology. These companies will also have the opportunity for future funding and beta-testing with a strategic program partner.

Why is “big oil” collaborating with the U.S. DOE on renewable energy? Simple, big oil is really big energy and all the super major energy companies like ExxonMobil, BP, Shell, Chevron and Total are already investing heavily in renewable energy and electric vehicle (EV) technology. “Big Energy” knows the future is renewable energy and they are preparing for the inevitable. www.jackkerfoot.com

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