Enable IPC Corporation's
(Pink Sheets: EIPC) subsidiary, SolRayo LLC, has unveiled the design of the
Company's new ultracapacitor using nanotechnology coatings for use in a number
of applications, including smart grid, grid stability, power quality, and renewable
energy. The new design is aimed at lowering costs and delivering more energy
and power than similar devices currently on the market for the same price, opening
up huge, untapped markets for ultracapacitors.
The new design is extremely flexible and is based on cells that can be used
individually, or stacked in assemblies to attain the desired voltage and power.
"We have designed individual 300 farad units (a farad is a unit of capacitance)
that can be stacked in series or parallel in a larger framework," explained
Kevin Leonard, SolRayo's Chief Technology Officer. "The slim design should
allow 300 farad units to be produced at considerably less expense than a
similar unit available today. That's quite an achievement."
"Our goal is to fundamentally change the market by opening up the use
nanotechnology in ultracapacitors in a wide range of applications," said
Mark Daugherty, SolRayo's CEO. "The idea is to use our cost-cutting
technology in a simple design that will address a myriad of applications,
beginning with smart grid, grid stability, power quality and renewable energy."
Addresses renewable energy issues
The State of Wisconsin awarded a grant to SolRayo in late 2008 to develop their
technology for renewable
energy applications in the state. One of the issues with solar and wind sources
is the cost of storing excess
energy so it can be used later as needed.
"The key is to keep costs low while significantly improving performance,"
Dr. Daugherty said.
"Our technology and this design will help achieve those goals."
Using ultracapacitors should cost significantly less than other storage methods
for many applications when
you look at total life cycle cost. Due to their simpler design, and significantly
longer life, ultracapacitors
require less upfront, maintenance and replacement costs than batteries and other
Standard ultracapacitors use carbon electrodes. The Enable IPC / SolRayo device
starts with carbon
electrodes and adds a proprietary nanotechnology coating which has been shown
to improve storage
capacity of ultracapacitors by many times while lowering the storage cost per
Design completed; alpha unit in process
The state grant requires Enable IPC's SolRayo subsidiary to develop, design
and build a prototype
ultracapacitor for renewable energy storage. Earlier this year, the Company
completed phase I of the
program, resulting in the designs pictured here. The Company is actively building
these units and is on
schedule to unveil its alpha unit product in January 2010.
Production units are scheduled to follow beta testing in early 2010.
While the Company's focus has been on grid stability, power quality and renewable
energy, the use of
ultracapacitors in other areas is gaining momentum. Third party market researchers
report large annual
growth in consumer, industrial and transportation applications.
"Ultracapacitors take some of the load off batteries when large bursts
of power are needed," explained Mr.
Leonard. "An example is in your digital cell phone - the cell phone is
powered by a battery, but the burst of
power needed for transmitting is often supplied by an ultracapacitor."
Estimates vary widely between market research reports, but Enable IPC personnel
believe a conservative
estimate of the worldwide ultracapacitor market could reach $600 million in
2012. This represents an
average annual growth rate of 15% to 17%.
"Ultracapacitors are coming into their own," said Dr. Daugherty.
"Our goal is to have our technology lead the
way to their widespread use throughout the world."