General Compression Raises $20M for Air Energy Storage

The next-generation of technology to use compressed air for energy storage is on its way. One of the companies leading the way — General Compression — has raised another $20.39 million Series B round, according to a filing.

SustainX Raises $14.4M for Air Energy Storage

A startup building the next-generation of compressed air energy storage, SustainX, has raised a new round of funding from investors including GE. The funds will help the company start construction on a 1 MW compressed air energy storage project with its first customer AES.

10 Companies to Watch for out of ARPA-E

Early-stage, high-risk, and potentially game-changing — those are a few things all the companies that have been funded by the Department of Energy’s ARPA-E program have in common. I’m at the ARPA-E Summit this week and here are 10 companies to watch for.

Vid-Biz: iTunes in the Cloud, World Cup Viewership, TiVo in Spain

Today on the Net: Apple is moving its iTunes music and movie service into the cloud, about a third of US residents watched the World Cup, according to Nielsen, and TiVo will supply software and services to power a next-generation TV initiative at ONO in Spain.

7 Cutting-Edge Energy Ideas That Didn’t Get ARPA-E Funding (Yet)

Here at the Department of Energy’s first ARPA-E Summit, which was created around the $400 million in grants that the DOE is giving out to early-stage clean power startups, there’s the “haves” and the “have nots.” The “haves” are the fortunate (lucky?) 1 percent of applicants that applied for and received an ARPA-E grant, and of course, the “have nots” are everyone else — mostly smart entrepreneurs with fascinating ideas that just didn’t get selected.
As I wandered around the ARPA-E Summit on Tuesday, chatted with attendees, and visited the booths of the finalists (who made it past the first cut but have not yet received funding), it was very clear that there has been a wealth of technology that has emerged to try to tap the ARPA-E funds. From fuel cells, to energy storage, to biofuels to batteries, I haven’t seen such a promising group in quite awhile. Here’s 7 cutting edge energy ideas that made it to the finalist round of the ARPA-E grants (and could very well receive ARPA-E funding in the next rounds):
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General Compression Pumps in $17M for Fuel-free Air Energy Storage

While everyone’s talking about new battery technologies that can store huge amounts of electricity for the power grid, for the time being the cheapest ways to store grid power is water and air — that is, pumped hydro and compressed air energy storage, or CAES. The latter involves using cheap power to pump air into underground caverns or tanks, then releasing it to augment a natural gas-fired turbine when power demands are at their peak.

Entrepreneurs and VCs are now looking for innovative ways to tweak this decades-old technology and startup General Compression has come up with an effective way to use compressed air for energy storage without burning natural gas. On Tuesday, the company announced the close of a $17 million Series A round of funding to help it build a commercial-scale unit to test the proposition.
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