Chicago, IL, December 22nd, 2016 – Influit Energy has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant for $225,000 to conduct research and development (R&D) work on the novel nanotechnology based flow battery that meets energy density targets for transportation and stationary storage and offers a cheaper, safer, and environmentally friendly rechargeable energy-storing fluid (nanoelectrofuel, NEF), which could ultimately allow refueling of batteries for electric vehicles (EVs) in the same fashion as gasoline-powered engines.
Influit Energy’s NEF battery features active energy storing materials in a pumpable low viscosity nanosuspensions used in a custom flow cell reactor. This technology is enabled by the patented surface modification approach which helps more efficient transport and storage of electrical energy in a highly versatile, interchangeable and rechargeable liquid format. The low cost and high energy density of the proposed flow batteries (up to 350 Wh/L) makes this technology highly competitive with currently used Li-ion batteries (250 Wh/L), while the flowable format enables charging the liquid in one device and using the energy in a separate device, offering new refueling opportunities for EV operations, specifically addressing range anxiety and long charging time – issues currently preventing widespread adoption of EVs.
“The National Science Foundation supports small businesses with the most innovative, cutting-edge ideas that have the potential to become great commercial successes and make huge societal impacts,” said Barry Johnson, Director of the NSF’s Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships. “We hope that this seed funding will spark solutions to some of the most important challenges of our time across all areas of science and technology.”
“This SBIR project is an important milestone for us. The nanoelectrofuel battery is very R&D intensive, and validation in the full flow cell enabled by this SBIR award will significantly de-risk further investments and commercialization of this new liquid energy storage”, said CEO of Influit Energy, John Katsoudas, “we strongly believe this could be a new sustainable alternative to oil”.
Once a small business is awarded a Phase I SBIR/STTR grant (up to $225,000), it becomes eligible to apply for a Phase II grant (up to $750,000). Small businesses with Phase II grants are eligible to receive up to $500,000 in additional matching funds with qualifying third-party investment or sales.
NSF accepts Phase I proposals from small businesses twice annually in June and December. Small businesses with innovative science and technology solutions, and commercial potential are encouraged to apply. All proposals submitted to the NSF SBIR/STTR program undergo a rigorous merit-based review process.
To learn more about the NSF SBIR/STTR program, visit: www.nsf.gov/SBIR.
About the National Science Foundation’s Small Business Programs: The National Science Foundation (NSF) awards nearly $190 million annually to startups and small businesses through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. The non-dilutive grants support research and development (R&D) across almost all areas of science and technology helping companies de-risk technology for commercial success. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $7 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering.