SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Propel(x), an online angel investment platform that helps investors source, evaluate, and fund pioneering science and technology startups, today announced that Seatrec, a renewable energy company offering a unique solution to generate electricity from temperature differences in the ocean, is currently raising $1M in growth capital on Propel(x)’s platform. Seatrec was founded as a spinoff from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and the California Institute of Technology by Dr. Yi Chao. Notable institutional investors in the seed round include Breakout Labs and Schmidt Marine Technology Partners.
About the Technology
Using technology developed, prototyped, and patented at the NASA JPL, Seatrec has engineered a Thermal RECharging (TREC) Battery that harvests energy from temperature differences. Its first application is to power underwater platforms, vehicles, and sensors. The TREC Battery contains materials that exhibit substantial thermal expansion during a solid-to-liquid phase change. High pressure resulting from this expansion is used to drive an electric generator and the resulting power is stored in batteries or supercapacitors.
The first generation TREC Battery is being integrated with an autonomous profiling float to support oceanographic research, climate monitoring and earthquake monitoring. In addition to fostering scientific discovery, the TREC Battery can reduce the need for costly, dangerous, and environmentally harmful lithium batteries, tons of which are regularly discarded at sea.
“We are pleased with the success we’ve had fundraising on Propel(x) and look forward to reaching our current fundraising goal of $1 million,” said Dr. Yi Chao, CEO and Founder of Seatrec. “Our technology presents an incredible opportunity to generate power from any temperature differential in the environment whether in the oceans or on land. Over 95% of the ocean remains unexplored. Our renewable energy solution has unlimited capacity, no battery-related wastage at sea, and less deployment and operational costs than traditional batteries.
As we continue to grow, we will work to develop additional applications relevant to industry ranging from oil and gas to defense and intelligence as well as recreation.”
While Seatrec is initially focusing their innovation on underwater applications, the same technology can also be applied over land where there are substantial temperature changes between day and night. In remote locations where grid power is not available, solar energy may not be available or reliable. In this case, Seatrec will provide a clean and reliable energy solution for sensors and electronic devices (e.g., smartphone at a camping site, remote soldiers). In the Arctic, the temperature difference between the warm water and cold air can also be harvested to power monitoring devices (e.g., weather stations).
“Seatrec’s technology offers a one-of-a-kind solution to generate electricity from temperature differences in the environment and has a large market opportunity considering the many applications of Seatrec’s innovation,” said Swati Chaturvedi, CEO and Co-Founder of Propel(x). “Their unique technology is representative of the many science and technology breakthroughs that are raising capital via the Propel(x) platform and we look forward to helping them reach their equity fundraising goals.”
Financing the Future
Propel(x) was founded to help angel investors identify, understand and invest in breakthrough technologies in sectors including life sciences, computer sciences, energy & clean technology, new materials and space. Not only are investors who invest in science and technology companies financing some of most innovative technologies, they are also investing in some of the most lucrative - deep technology companies account for the majority of the Dow Jones Industrial Average index today.
Propel(x) Inc. is an online investment platform that connects science and technology startups with angel investors in order to unleash huge innovations, grow great businesses, and have an impact on the way people live. Founded in 2013 by CEO, Swati Chaturvedi and Lisheng Wang, Propel(x) introduces its members to ground-breaking startups that are developing new forms of clean energy, life-saving drugs, new methods of space exploration, and innovative new materials amongst others. By facilitating private funding for startups based on scientific and technological breakthroughs, Propel(x) seeks to change the world and build the next generation of great companies. For more information, please visit: www.propelx.com.
Seatrec is a renewable energy company that develops unique solutions for electricity production from temperature differences in the environment. Founded in 2012 by CEO, Dr. Yi Chao, Seatrec is using technology developed, prototyped, and patented at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and now exclusively licensed from Caltech, to provide clean power for remote off-grid locations. The initial market focus is on the ocean, where Seatrec provides a unique power solution for underwater research and explorations and at the same time eliminates the disposal of environmentally harmful batteries at sea. Future applications will harvest energy from the day and night temperature differences on land as well as air-sea temperature differences in the Arctic. For more information, please visit: seatrec.com.