SDTC Provides C$48 Million in Funding for Clean Tech Projects; Li-Ion Battery for Hybrids Among Them
Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) approved C$48 million (US$45.8 million) in new funding for the development and demonstration of 19 clean technologies.
Among the newly funded projects are the development of lithium-ion battery packs for hybrid vehicles, a continuously variable transmission (CVT) for heavy-duty applications; the retrofitting of hydrogen-based diesel engine emissions reduction systems; demonstrating a process for the reforming of bio-feedstocks such as glycerol to hydrogen; and demonstrating a process for producing cellulosic ethanol from wood waste.
Li-ion Battery. Advanced Lithium Power Inc. is leading a consortium that includes E-One Moli Energy (Canada) Limited and Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide, Inc.
ALP has developed proprietary battery management and control systems, including cell balancing and thermal management, for lithium-ion battery packs. E-One Moli Energy is a lithium-ion cell manufacturer. A spin-off from the lithium research program at the University of British Columbia, E-One Moli has a production capacity of 2 million cylindrical cells per month, and is the only high volume manufacturer of cylindrical lithium-ion rechargeable cells in North America. The Molicels use lithium manganese oxide (LiMn2O4) in the cathode.
Quantum acquired a 19.9% stake in Advanced Lithium Power Inc. in 2006. (Earlier post.) Quantum is using an ALP battery pack and management system to fulfill a $2.1 million contract from California’s South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) to develop, manufacture, and deploy 20 Ford Escape PHEVs for demonstration in Southern California.
Advanced Lithium Power Inc. (ALP), has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a leading Chinese automaker to jointly develop battery-dominant propulsion systems for passenger vehicles, with the goal of establishing a cooperative venture to commercialize products globally. (Earlier post.)
The SDTC project is intended to advance the company’s existing prototype battery results by building, testing, and demonstrating a production-ready battery pack to automotive manufacturers.
Heavy-duty CVT. CVT Corp. is working with Atelier d’usinage Coté & Audet Inc. on this project. Despite their improved efficiency over conventional geared transmissions, CVTs have not been adopted in heavy duty vehicles to date due to the mechanical strain imposed by the high torque associated with these vehicles. CVT Corp. has developed a high efficiency toroidal CVT suitable for the heavy-duty vehicle market. CVT Corp’s system will be tested on a tractor. The company expects to demonstrate dramatically reduced fuel consumption (as much as 25%) as well as the amount of air contaminants produced.
Diesel emissions reduction. NxtGen Emission Controls Inc. is leading a consortium that inlcudes Engine Control Systems Inc. and Mullen Trucking LP.
NxtGen Emission Controls is developing diesel emission reduction technology using hydrogen produced from diesel fuel and engine exhaust to reduce particulate matter and NOx emissions while enabling engine manufacturers to increase fuel economy. NxtGen’s components can be retrofitted onto existing diesel trucks or factory installed on new vehicles. The project involves retrofitting the emission reduction system onto medium and heavy-duty commercial trucks to validate performance and durability in daily over-the-road operation.
Bio-feedstocks to hydrogen. HTC Hydrogen Technologies Corp. is leading a consortium that includes: Dumur Industries; HTC Purenergy; Milligan Bio-Tech Inc.; Pinnacle Industrial Services; Pound-Maker AgVentures Ltd.; and University of Regina/International Test Centre for CO2 Capture.
HTC plans to build the first multi-feedstock hydrogen production demonstration project to reform bio-feedstock material such as glycerol into hydrogen. The process is designed to be scaleable from very small to very large plants—with an aim to solve the long standing transportation and storage cost barriers to hydrogen market growth.
Cellulosic ethanol from wood waste. Woodland Biofuels Inc. and its partners—Minas Basin Pulp and Power Company Ltd. and Thermo Design Engineering—will build a demonstration facility to efficiently produce cellulosic ethanol from wood waste using Woodland’s patented Catalyzed Pressure Reduction technology, which also can be used to convert a broad range of renewable biomass materials into sustainable fuels.
The project will field test the new integrated system equipment, determine energy consumption/operating costs, and prove the technology’s efficiency. A steam blown gasifier will produce syngas for cleaning and catalytic conversion to ethanol. Waste heat from the plant will also eliminate the need to use 19,000,000 liters per year of Bunker C oil at a neighboring paper recycling plant.
The 14 other projects target sectors core to Canada’s economy including energy exploration and production; power generation; energy utilization; agriculture; forestry, wood products and pulp & paper products; and waste management. Funding for each project is subject to final contract execution.
SDTC is a not-for-profit foundation that finances and supports the development and demonstration of clean technologies which provide solutions to issues of climate change, clean air, water quality and soil, and which deliver economic, environmental and health benefits to Canadians. To do so, the Foundation draws from an investment fund of $550 million.
The Government of Canada established SDTC in 2001. The Foundation reports to Parliament through the Minister of Natural Resources Canada.
Since April 2002, SDTC has completed ten funding rounds, committed $285 million to 125 clean technology projects, and leveraged $690 million from project consortia members, for a total portfolio value of $975 million.
SDTC will launch its next call for Statements of Interest (SOIs) on September 5, 2007. The upcoming call for SOIs will include a request for projects with technologies that address climate change, clean air, clean water and clean soil issues. Solutions that address more than one focus area are of greatest interest.
In addition to the current fund, the 2007 Federal Budget announced the creation of the new NextGen Biofuels Fund. With this new Fund, which SDTC is in the process of establishing, the Foundation will work to maximize the Canadian feedstock advantage by establishing large-scale facilities for the production of next generation renewable fuels.