This week in ClimatePULSE we take a look at some of the most promising clean technology solutions. And now that the enthusiasm regarding corn-ethanol has (rightfully) faded, what better time to do so? While this list is far from exhaustive, it should provide some insight into (hopefully) safe bets within the clean tech sector. We have chosen to profile 5 companies considered to have high potential. So, let’s get started…
1) DeepStream Technologies – Founded in 2003, based in Bangkor, UK and toting 52 employees, DeepStream has developed a technology “for a new era of energy management”. DeepStream’s embedded intelligence systems offer energy savings by monitoring and controlling energy at the point of use within all electric circuits. The 3D shaped circuit (view picture above) sensor technology can communicate wirelessly with energy management systems and add automated intelligence to all types of electrical equipment and infrastructure. Recently profiled in the “Gaurdian/Library House CleanTech 100” this technology even has the potential for energy saving uses in industrial plants.
2) Ausra – Founded in 2006 and based out of Palo Alto, California, this solar power clean tech firm packs a punch. Ausra’a ingenuity in the solar industry is based on their lack of a heat transfer fluid in the technology. Rather than using a heat transfer fluid like oil (that raises the costs of the tech), Ausra heats water by focusing sunlight into a series of pipes filled with water located above mirrors. The heat from the sunlight is transferred to the water to create steam, which, in turn, powers a turbine to produce electricity. According to David Mills, the founder of Ausra, the technology will be able to produce power at around 10 cents per kilowatt-hour (equivalent to the likes of natural gas and coal) sometime in the next two years. However, construction costs are steep and the technology would likely only be suitable in areas that receive extensive sunlight.
3) Ormat Technologies – This Reno, Nevada based geothermal energy giant has over four decades of experience. With geothermal having less downtime than both coal and nuclear power plants, the technology has caught the attention of investors worldwide. Ormat’s technology is currently used in more plants around the world than that of any other company. And now that Ormat is working in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy to test the first commercial enhanced geothermal deep-drilling technology, we can expect big (maybe even volcano-big) things to come in the future.
4) Magenn Power – Founded in 2004, this Ottawa, Canada based firm has come up with a unique solution to some of the problems faced by the wind-power sector. They propose to generate electricity from high altitude winds by tethering helium-filled Magenn Air Rotor Systems (MARS) hundreds of meters in the sky. Crazy right? Maybe it is, but also ingenious. Once in the sky the MARS rotor blades catch higher-altitude wind and generators on each side of the MARS convert that rotation into elecrtical energy.
5) Marine Current Turbines – Founded in 1989 and based in Bristol, UK, this small firm has developed a product that is capable of extracting the enormous amounts of energy found in tidal currents. The tidal turbines they design are much smaller than wind turbines, but just as efficient. The firm and its partners recently began the installation of “SeaGen”, the world’s first commercial scale tidal turbine in Northern Ireland’s Strangford Lough.
ClimateCHECK is a greenhouse gas (GHG) management services and solutions company. The firm’s solutions support all facets of the carbon commodities market, including the verification, validation and consultation of GHG inventories and program portfolios, as well as quantification protocols for emissions reduction projects and clean technologies. ClimateCHECK is a sponsor and co-founded, with World Resources Institute and Carbon Disclosure Project, the Greenhouse Gas Management Institute (www.ghginstitute.org). Founded in March 2007, the company has locations throughout North America. For more information visit www.climate-check.com