Capacitech Energy Innovation Combines Solar Cells & Batteries in a Thin Film
Orlando, Fla. (August 7, 2019) – As Capacitech Energy’s first innovation begins to enter the commercial market, the company has started exploring other energy storage innovations.
Capacitech and the University of Central Florida are staring at the sun.
As an undergraduate student, Joe Sleppy, who is now the CEO of Capacitech, was a part of the team at the University of Central Florida researchers as they developed a solution to storing solar energy in a thin and flexible film. Now Capacitech is assisting in the commercialization of that technology. Last month, the National Science Foundation saw potential in the concept and awarded the firm $225,000 to fund development of the new technology.
This energy storing solar film concept will be a nice addition to the firm’s product line featuring unique, wire-shaped energy storage devices.
“One of the flaws in solar power today is that you need several pieces of equipment to modify voltages, control power, store the energy, and eventually deliver it to the home,” Sleppy says. “All this equipment is an expensive eye sore! This awesome new technology would combine much of this equipment into a single unit leading to better looking, easier to install, higher performing, more efficient solar power systems using thinner and lighter weight solar panels.”
“By developing this new concept, we believe we can bring solar power to just about any location, including wearables,” he adds. “It’s exciting to see the initial support from the National Science Foundation for moving this forward.”
For instance, one area where Sleppy hopes this technology can make a difference outside the typical solar power application is in the health of triathletes. It’s very difficult to monitor an athlete’s biometrics during the length and rigor of a triathlon.
Using the solar film, the athlete could have biometric devices on the body, powered by solar energy. The device would be able to store power for when the athlete is submerged in water or if the weather was bad.
“Participating in a triathlon is a dangerous sport because of the rigors on the body,” Sleppy says. “This innovation could save lives.”
Capacitech Energy has already proven its capabilities to store energy in unusual places. The company was formed to bring the development of a cable-based capacitor to market, a technology also developed at the University of Central Florida in 2014.
The cable-based capacitor is still the company’s primary focus because of the multitude of applications for the technology. Capacitech is currently focused on building the cable-based capacitor inside DC power cords to help batteries in solar power systems and IT backup power systems last longer. It can also help miniaturize electronics and could greatly enhance the energy, automotive, healthcare and IT industries.
Once brought to market, the National Science Foundation calls the technology transformative. That initial technology was also boosted from a similar National Science Foundation grant.
As to the solar power grant, the National Science Foundation added:
“NSF is proud to support the technology of the future by thinking beyond incremental developments and funding the most creative, impactful ideas across all markets and areas of science and engineering,” said Andrea Belz, Division Director of the Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships at NSF. “With the support of our research funds, any deep technology startup or small business can guide basic science into meaningful solutions that address tremendous needs.”
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, also known as America’s Seed Fund, powered by NSF, undergo a rigorous merit-based review process.
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For more information media should contact –
Joe Sleppy, CEO, Capacitech Energy, 727-434-1229, email@example.com
Carol Ann Dykes Logue, Site Manager, UCF Business Incubation Program, 407-635-9882, Carolann.firstname.lastname@example.org
Alan Byrd, Alan Byrd & Associates, 407-415-8470, Alan@ByrdConnections.com
About Capacitech Energy: Capacitech is bringing a new type of capacitor to market. This capacitor, unlike traditional capacitors, is shaped like a wire rather than a soda can. This unique form factor has a plethora of advantages. Most significantly, its thin and flexile nature gives way to embed Capacitech’s Cable-Based Capacitor (CBC) inside power cords. This enables Capacitech’s customers to build capacitive, high-power density energy storage into the infrastructure of systems to improve power quality and complement batteries up without needing to change circuit designs. We are initially targeting the residential solar power market and will scale to IT backup power systems, EVs, wind turbines, and more in the future. For more information, visit capacitechenergy.com
About the UCF Business Incubation Program: The University of Central Florida Business Incubation Program is a community resource that provides early-stage companies with the tools, training and infrastructure to become financially stable, high growth/impact enterprises. Since 1999, this award-winning program has helped over 390 local startup companies reach their potential faster by providing vital business development resources.
With seven facilities throughout the region, the UCF Business Incubation Program is an economic development partnership between the University of Central Florida, the Corridor, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia counties, and the cities of Apopka, Kissimmee, Orlando and Winter Springs. For the 2016/17 and 2017 /18 fiscal years, the activities of these participating firms have helped sustain more than 6,275 local jobs and have had a cumulative impact of more than $888 million on regional GDP and more than $1.59 billion on regional sales. During the same period, the program has returned $12.03 for every $1 invested in the program. For more information, visit www.incubator.ucf.edu
About the National Science Foundation’s Small Business Programs: America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF awards $200 million annually to startups and small businesses, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. Startups working across almost all areas of science and technology can receive up to $1.5 million in non-dilutive funds to support research and development (R&D), helping de-risk technology for commercial success. America’s Seed Fund is congressionally mandated through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $8.1 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. To learn more about America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, visit: https://seedfund.nsf.gov/