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America's Next Top Energy Innovator Challenge

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SH Coatings LP

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

SH Coating protects power lines from inclement weather as well as contamination from salt deposits that often cause flashovers in coastal environments.  The coating can be applied to existing power lines and equipment in any field condition.

The most important application is coating power lines in ice storm threatened areas.   Power lines coated with SHC prevent the ice build-up that come with ice storms by repelling the rain that ordinarily falls on power lines and freezes there forming a wing on the leeward side of the line and causing the lines to gallop during wind events.  This action destroys the poles carrying the lines as well as cause lines to short out.  Damage caused by these events causes severe economic damage to communities, and blacks out large areas of a region’s power grid when they hit - sometimes for extended times. 

The most extreme damage example was an ice storm that almost completely shut down the grid around Montreal, Canada, in 1998.  That storm caused $5 Billion in damage to the network, not including collateral damage to commercial, industrial and residential interests.  There are many examples of similar here in the United States.

The Ice Belt here in the United States ranges from Montana to New Mexico and then east through the plains such as Kansas, Nebraska and Arkansas, where upper level low-pressure areas met high-pressure artic weather.  Much of the Midwest and New England have also experienced ice storms that cause deaths as well as significant economic damage due to power outages.  There has been no technology available until now to protect these systems.  The SHC technology is now available and will help protect these important systems from problems created by these ice storms. 

Costs to repair networks are great.  The average cost of replacing one wooden power pole is approximately $2,000.00.  With approximately 20 to 25 poles per mile, the cost can easily exceed $30,000 per mile. It is not unheard of for a single ice storm to pull down thousands of poles, which can cost a municipality from $20 to $40 million.  Ask a rural electric coop what his biggest nightmare is and he will tell you an ice storm.  That is what keeps their attention to the weather during the winter months. SHC will protect our power networks and defend against this catastrophe.

While our focus is upon damages caused by ice on power lines, we also believe that the SHC coating can be applied safely and effectively to adjoining trees and greenery that may threaten power lines by collapsing onto them.  The SHC coating is toxicologically safe for the environment and could be sprayed onto dormant trees and greenery to prevent ice built up.  While this treatment has yet to be tested, we believe that it is a viable possibility that will not harm the environment.

A reliable working and protected power network during winter events is important to the wellbeing of local, as well as large, networks and economies.  

Innovators

US e-Chromic
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
828 likes

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California Lithium Battery, Inc.
Argonne National Laboratory
626 likes

California Lithium Battery (CaLBattery), based in Los Angeles, California, is developing a low-cost, advanced lithium-ion battery that employs a novel silicon graphene composite material that will substantially improve battery cycle life. When combined with other advanced battery materials, it could effectively lower battery life cycle cost by up to 70 percent. Over the next year, CALBattery will be working with Argonne National Laboratory to combine their patented silicon-graphene anode material process together with other advanced ANL cathode and electrolyte battery materials.

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Vorbeck Materials Corp.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
45458 likes

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Element One, Inc.
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
191524 likes

Element One, based in Boulder, Colorado, has created the only available coatings that change color when detecting hydrogen and other hazardous gas leaks, either reversibly or non-reversibly, to provide both current and historical information about leaks. Element One’s patented gas indicators and sensors use catalyzed thin films or nanoparticles of a transition metal oxide to create very low cost sensors for use in industrial and consumer environments, greatly reducing the potential for undetected leaks and their cost and safety implications. This technology is also being integrated for use in refineries, industry gas and fuel cells systems and was developed using technology from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

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Teknikem, A Division of RockinBoat LLC
Y12 National Security Complex
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Borla Performance Industries, Inc.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
1830 likes

Borla Performance Industries, based in Johnson City, has an option to license a novel, nano-pore membrane technology from Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Combining this innovation with Borla’s exhaust technology will lead to a low cost, unique exhaust system that will double as an energy neutral device to recover and reclaim clean water from engines powered by diesel, gasoline or natural gas. Military and commercial applications include transport and stationery power plants, marine, cars and trucks.

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SynchroPET LLC
Brookhaven National Laboratory
665 likes

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Integrated Dynamic Electron Solutions, Inc.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
333 likes

Integrated Dynamic Electron Solutions, Inc., based in Belmont, California, uses Dynamic Transmission Electron Microscopes (DTEM) to enable imaging of nanoscale objects, such as proteins, thin films and nanoparticles at unprecedented time scales and frame rates. By utilizing a laser-driven electron source, DTEMs are able to produce short bursts of electrons that can form an image with nanometer resolution in as little as 10 nanoseconds. This enables observation of dynamics in material systems that play an important role in a wide range of energy technologies, including battery electrodes, petroleum catalysts, solar cell materials, and organisms for bio fuel growth. Integrated Dynamic Electron Solutions uses technology developed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

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7AC Technologies, Inc.
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
498 likes

7AC Technologies, based in Woburn, Massachusetts, is developing Liquid Desiccant HVAC systems for Commercial and Industrial buildings using technology from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. These Liquid Desiccant HVAC systems deliver a 50 to 75 percent reduction in energy usage over conventional HVAC units. The system consists of a membrane conditioner responsible for drying and cooling the air and a heat-driven regenerator. The liquid desiccant design allows for the utilization of solar or waste heat sources, paving the way for net-zero energy retrofits to existing buildings with costs comparable to conventional HVAC.

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TrakLok Corporation
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
463 likes

TrakLok, Inc., based in Knoxville, Tenn., intends to use an Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)-developed, technology for tagging, tracking, locating and communicating with cargo containers and trailers in transit. The ORNL technology provides an avenue to meet increasing requirements for shipping containers to be "smart boxes" that can be tracked electronically. TrakLok uses GPS technology and satellite communications as part of its tracking and warning capability and international container locking technology to protect against container tampering, theft, vandalism and smuggling. Shipments can be tracked through a web-accessible, information technology-based global tracking system to provide real time visibility of cargo.

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Iowa Powder Atomization Technologies, Inc. (IPAT), based in Nevada, Iowa, is using gas atomization technology developed at Ames Laboratory to make titanium powder with processes that are ten times more efficient than traditional powder-making methods — significantly lowering the cost of the powder to manufacturers. The powder form of titanium is easier to work with than having to cast the metal — where manufacturers melt and pour liquid metal into molds — particularly given titanium’s tendency to react with the materials used to form molds. Titanium’s strength, light weight, biocompatibility and resistance to corrosion make it ideal for use in a variety of parts — from components for artificial limbs — like those used by wounded veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan — to military vehicle components, biomedical implants, aerospace fasteners and chemical plant valves.

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Umpqua Energy, Inc.
Argonne National Laboratory
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Umpqua Energy, based in Medford, Oregon, is using an Argonne National Laboratory technology to develop a system that allows a gasoline engine to operate in an extreme lean burn mode in order to increase gasoline mileage. One negative side effect of a lean burn engine, whether powered by gasoline or diesel fuel, is an increase in the amount of harmful gases released to the environment. The company expects to both increase fuel economy and simultaneously reduce emissions with its system.

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Woodmont Enterprises LLC
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
703 likes

Woodmont Enterprises, based in Nashville, Tennessee, is creating a top-coat solution moisture barrier product for oriented-strand board (OSB), an engineered wood product formed by layering flakes of wood, by using technology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The primary focus is to create a moisture barrier on OSB during transportation and after installation. One net benefit to moisture protected OSB after installation is mold resistance.

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