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Rotterdam firm gets grant for heat-to-power technology

Thursday, September 13, 2012
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— A $1.5 million financing package will allow Ener-G-Rotors Inc. to boost development of its clean technology and broaden its commercial opportunities on the global market.

The Rotterdam company announced Wednesday that it had closed the financing deal with Bright Capital Seed Fund, a division of global venture capital company Bright Capital. This particular division offers early-stage investment to companies working on breakthrough technology. In the case of Ener-G-Rotors, this technology is its low-cost heat-to-electricity devices.

“This latest investment will enable us to add additional technical resources, expand our team and accelerate commercialization,” company CEO Michael Newell said in a news release. “Heat to power, in particular, low-temperature waste heat to electricity conversion, represents an enormous opportunity worldwide. Our technology is an economic breakthrough for a wide range of global industries by efficiently generating power from waste heat.”

By partnering with Bright Capital, Ener-G-Rotors gains additional experience, direct access to world markets and the financial resources to capitalize on opportunities in those markets.

Bright Capital Seed Fund had studied the market thoroughly, managing partner Vadim Kulikov said in the release, and was impressed by the Rotterdam company’s management team and technology. In particular, the company’s heat-to-power appliance — the GEN4 — could open new markets for low-grade waste heat that was previously dissipated into the atmosphere.

The technology was first developed at Ener-G-Rotors’ former location in Schenectady, where it had only enough space to develop 5-kilowatt units. After moving to a larger research and development and manufacturing facility in 2010, it began focusing more on a system that generated 30 to 60 kilowatts of electricity.

In essence, the system generates electricity at temperatures and sizes previously not possible. Creating no emissions, the GEN4 saves industrial customers money by capturing low-temperature waste heat and converting it to electricity. This reduces the amount of electricity customers need to buy from the grid.

“Their technology will help companies save money, become more efficient and at the same time lower their carbon footprint,” said Kulikov. “The key to unlocking this is the unique performance of their systems, which can generate the same level of efficiency in the 5kW range that other systems can only achieve at the 5MW scale.”

 
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