Bill Gates backs storage innovator

Software tycoon Gates is one of the Aquion backers

Software tycoon Gates is one of the Aquion backers

US energy storage technologist Aquion Energy has landed $35m in new funding from investors including Microsoft founder Bill Gates to push its “environmentally benign” aqueous hybrid ion (AHI) battery to commercial roll-out.

The financing round was led by Bright Capital with money from Gates, Gentry Venture Partners, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Foundation Capital, and Advanced Technology Ventures.

Aquion says it will be delivering initial, pre-production AHI units to “selected lead customers and partners” throughout 2013.

That will be followed by the shipping of first commercial batteries from its high-volume manufacturing plant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to “enable broad adoption of renewable energy technologies”.

The AHI battery system – based around a saltwater electrolyte, sodium ions, an activated carbon anode and manganese-oxide cathode, and cotton separator – is designed to be scaled from off- and micro-grid systems Log in to read complete article.

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