The advanced energy industry lends itself to the development of disruptive technologies that will make the global energy system more clean, secure, efficient and affordable. Fast Company came up with a list of the world’s 50 most innovative companies. We present the advanced energy companies that made the list!
The multinational internet giant has invested in quite a number of advanced energy projects ranging from investments in wind farms in North Dakota, to selling energy on the spot market, to building its own prototype of a solar panel. Additionally, the corporation is working on its “Google Driverless Cars” project which will create autonomous cars. These cars will be able to fulfil the capabilities of a human-driven traditional car.
GE has taken the concept of big data to another level with its creation of the world’s first intelligent turbine. The company has created a system where all its machines relay data about how they are operating. The analytics team then searches this information and fixes any problems to increase the efficiency of the machines. According to GE, data can boost productivity in the U.S by 1.5% which over a 20-year period could save enough cash to raise the national income by 30%.
XL Hybrids retrofits vans and trucks with an electric motor and lithium-ion battery packs. This reduces emissions by 20%. Some of its customers include FedEx and Coca-Cola.
This Brazilian petrochemical giant is making plastic out of sugarcane. It uses a method that captures up to 2 tons of carbon dioxide for each ton of plastic produced when making polyethene. In 2013, Braskem developed a line of low-density renewable plastic perfect for shopping bags and flexible packaging,
In addition to manufacturing electric vehicles, Tesla has also invented charging stations called super chargers to make it easier for electric vehicle users to travel across the U.S. without the fear of long charging waits.
Philips has manufactured LED bulbs which will lower carbon emissions. The bulbs are also developed to last decades and can be controlled from anywhere there is an internet connection via a smartphone app. It can sense how much illumination is needed and where it should be directed. For example, bulbs such as Hue that can be instructed to turn a certain colour depending on the weather.
The multinational has designed the Powerhouse solar shingle which integrates PV functionality into an asphalt roof-shingle form factor. These shingles reduce installation costs because both the conventional roofing shingles and solar generating shingles are installed at the same time.
U.S. Marine Corps
Though it's not technically a company, the U.S. Marine Corps has built the Expeditionary Energy Office (E2O), a building where it uses hybrid innovations such as the Marine Austere Patrolling System (MAPS), Solar Portable Alternative Communications (SPACES) and Hybrid power for Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacements (MTVRs). MAPS are backpacks that contain a flexible solar panel which allows marines to power their gear and filter their water without multiple batteries. SPACES allows marines to use solar power for satellite and internet communications when they carry ammunition. The Hybrid power for MTVRs are small two-to-three-cylinder generators that allow MTVRs to shut off their engines without pulling the plug on computers.
Okeanos has developed the Okeonos WaterChip, a massively paralleled desalination platform that uses a patent-pending micro-electrochemical process to desalinate with radically improved energy efficiency.
Azuri Technologies provides sustainable solar power to developing countries using low-cost, pay-as-you-go panels. Customers buy scratch cards that cost $1 to $1.50 a week and activate the system by texting the codes on the cards. The system consists of a solar panel and battery pack, two overhead lights and a mobile phone charger.The solar system can be paid off in 18 months if payments are made on a regular basis.
Ceres is a biotechnology company that uses advanced plant breeding and biotechnology to develop low-carbon, non-food grasses for advanced biofuels and biopower. The energy crops can provide more fuel or electricity, new opportunities for growers and a cleaner environment.
The solar project finance company uses crowdfunding of loans for solar development projects and make a return on the investments. Lenders will eventually get their money back after the project is fully funded, installed and providing power. Solar Mosaic takes 5 percent of what was raised if the project is fully funded.
Nest is a home automation company that designs and manufactures sensor-driven, Wi-Fi-enabled, self-learning, programmable thermostats, carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. These smart devices learn your heating preferences over time so you don’t have to program it. Plus, it the company was just purchased by Google!
NICE systems is a software company that specializes in big data be it through telephone voice recording, data security and surveillance and how to analyze the recorded data. Using cross-channel and multi-sensor analytics, NICE solutions, creates systems that helps organizations to improve business performance and increase operational efficiency as well as prevent financial crime.