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Energy Foundry invests seed funds to SiNode

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March 13
12:34 PM 2014

SiNode has secured seed funding from Energy Foundry at an undisclosed amount, TechCrunch reported.

The Chicago-based investor will pour anywhere from $100,000 to $250,000 in early stage projects and for more mature firms, they can invest $500,000 to $750,000. SiNode is an early-stage firm that seeks to lengthen the energy storage capacity of batteries and increase their charging rate, the report said.

TechCrunch reported Energy Foundry Managing Director Sarah Hochman as saying, "There's a whole lot of activity around energy technology development that has happened that has been under the radar."

SiNode is working on upgrading the anode material that is currently utilized in lithium ion batteries that is used to provide power to laptops, mobile phones, tablets and electric cars by utilizing technology that has been developed by the Northwestern University in Chicago. The anodes used in conventional lithium ion batteries are graphite but SiNode is deploying silicon and graphene arranged in a layered structure to come up with these improved batteries, the report said.

The report quoted an article about the company earlier published in the Chicago Tribune which explained, "SiNode is commercializing a patented process developed by Northwestern professor Harold H. Kung that increases the absorption of anodes, one of the electrodes that send electrons into an electrical device. The result is a latticework of silicon and graphene produced on the cheap with a porous microscopic surface that holds more charged lithium ions - and thus more electric charge." That report added that SiNode's possible clients include battery firms and makers of consumer electronics.

The two largest utility firms in Illinois, ComEd and Ameren, donated $25 million to establish Energy Foundry. The creation of the non-profit independent investment vehicle was prompted by the 2011 bill passed by the state that required the utilities to revamp the grid. Energy Foundry was launched in February last year and aside from SiNode, it has also invested in Root3 Technologies, Intellihot Green Technologies and in an unnamed renewable energy project developer, the report said.

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