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Lux’s analysts scored each against a 10-metric scorecard, while providing critical analysis of their prospects.
Beta Renewables – Alternative fuels, bio-based materials and chemicals:All eyes will be on Beta’s commercial cellulosic ethanol facility in Italy in 2013; can it ramp up on-time and on budget? Or will the cellulosic ethanol industry continue its disappointing slide?
Materials Innovation Technologies (MIT) – Advanced materials:Leading auto-OEMs are heavily investing in carbon-fibre cost reduction to make lighter vehicles, but for higher-volume use efficient and economic end-of-life recycling processes will be critical – MIT is a leader in this space and already boasts a slew of development partners
N-Solv – Exploration and production:With a warm-solvent based heavy oil extraction methodology that promises water and CO2 saving over traditional methods, backing by energy giant Enbridge and a pilot facility with Suncor, N-Solv has the potential to attract a suite of suitors or licensing partners in 2013
Imprint Energy – Printed, flexible and organic electronics:Imprint Energy develops solution processed rechargeable zinc batteries with a credible roadmap for lower cost and higher performance than competitive thin-film battery technologies, potentially helping make applications like powered smart cards a reality
Phosphagenics – Formulation and delivery:This start-up develops a trans-dermal delivery platform; adding to its rapidly expanding consumer business and progress in equine supplements, Phosphagenics’ first serious pharma product is slated to enter pivotal trails in 2013
Azzurro Semiconductors – Energy electronics:An early innovator in gallium nitride (GaN) on silicon substrates has started industrial-scale manufacturing of six-inch diameter wafers that can boost the efficiency of both LEDs and power electronics, and has forged fruitful collaborations with Epistar and Osram Opto Semiconductors
Enbala Power Networks – Grid storage, efficient building systems:The frequency regulation compensation ruling in US FERC Order 755 will place a higher value on Enbala’s grid optimisation and demand management capabilities in 2013; it can address ancillary services markets at a cost significantly less than that of most grid storage systems
Boulder Ionics – Electric vehicles:Ionic liquids could enhance performance in both batteries and supercapacitors; 2013 will be critical to monitor whether Boulder’s low cost solution lives up the hype
Silevo – Solar components, solar systems:By utilising electroplated copper contacts and a thin amorphous silicon layer on its crystalline silicon cells, Silevo has a module efficiency of 17.8 percent, with a viable roadmap to higher efficiency at competitive costs; look for it to compete with the likes of Sunpower as it scales production
Desalitech – Water:Desalitech improves the efficiency of reverse osmosis desalination by lowering membrane feed pressure, eliminating the needs for energy-recovery devices and improving water recovery; a second round of funding effort in 2013 could see the company through to profitability