Posts Tagged ‘ Science ’

HZO and HORIZONS VENTURES – The Origins

One of the best companies I check in on regularly, HZO,  just came out with an Origin Story of sorts.

From the article,

“Horizons Ventures seeks out disruptive technology focused start-ups that are driving positive changes for the future; these start-ups also have a track record of becoming household names after several years. Recent investments by the company include Hampton Creek Foods, Impossible Foods, Viv Labs and Muufri; the company also invests in companies in finance, artificial intelligence, mobile, and security.

Horizons Ventures was one of the first companies to invest in HZO in late 2011 by purchasing a $3 million stake in HZO as part of a preferred equity investment. Patrick Poon represents Horizons Ventures on HZO’s Board of Directors.”

If you want to know more about HZO, another recent article goes more in depth about their abilities,

“HZO offers the world an alternative to internal rubber seals and bulky, ugly cases. We don’t protect against water leaking into your device. We protect the components inside devices so it doesn’t matter if water gets in. HZO creates an internal seal around the important electronic components that run your device, creating a barrier between them and any liquid that could potentially cause harm.”

Reader Challenge,

Post in the comments what you would protect with HZO‘s Water/Corrosion Resistant abilities? 

Here is a Visual to get the imagination started.

HZO Image

Happy 2014! and Prompt

Hello Everyone!

I just noticed my last post was back in October. How did that happen? Guess my new job at EMC Corp has hogged all my time for the last two months.

I want to apologize to any that have come to visit this odd little publication and found no updates for such a long period.

This in no way means I have stopped my absorption of science and technology during my internet vacation.

OriginOil.com has premiered their permanent Technology showcase – LINK

Also a new method to turn freshly harvested algae into crude oil in 30 minutes was also posted over my break. – LINK

Emerging Objects had a wonderful showcase featured as well. Check out their Facebook page for news and updates. Here is some beautiful pictures from the site.

20140104-150601.jpg

20140104-150506.jpg

Yulex Corporation made some huge news with this announcement.

From Site – SGB Inc., an agricultural biotechnology company, and Yulex Corporation, a biomaterial company, announced today a collaboration to establish a genomics and molecular breeding platform focused on accelerating the crop improvement of Guayule as a sustainable source of biorubber that can replace traditional tropical or petroleum-based rubber for medical, consumer and industrial markets. – See more at: LINK

Of course CES 2014LINK – not much to say here, this is like a tech enthusiast’s Spring Break. Keep checking back for so much techie goodness.

There is a fantastic article on Elon Musk, which they mention the Falcon Heavy and the Model X, it gives me the shivers. LINK

Now for a Writing Prompt, because I said so.

Prompt – pick one of the companies above, read about one of their technologies, apply that tech in a new category of industry that they aren’t in yet, and try to show your audience how much impact that could have on a near future.

Example – OriginOil’s separation technology applied to the diary industry to enhance protein harvest and cheese making.

Have a wonderful first weekend,

Andrew

A New Type of Vessel for the Nuclear Industry

NOTE – Originally Written for some of my Nuclear Engineering friends on Thorium Energy Alliance.

A Little Hump Day Fun. Lighter Weight and Stronger Pressure Vessels/Systems using Composite Wraps for the Nuclear Industry. This one is a little long and many of the facts are Wiki-sourced.

I remember a few years back Americans got all huffy about not being able to forge reactor vessels anymore. We had the skills, but didn’t want the environmental thrills that came along with it (I know dumb rhyme).

But I say, why resurrect the old vessels at all? I know Molten Salt don’t need a main pressure vessel (the steam system will need a pressurized system so my idea still counts). But we haven’t got those approved yet and swaps of old reactor vessels could be worth it.

So what to do? A Reactor Vessel needs to withstand over 150 Bar, as well as handle over 600 F, along with corrosive elements in the water. Instead of using specialized 300 Series Steel Cladding and Liners, why not use some lighter alloys and composite wraps?

Average CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) Tank is rated at 2900 psi (199.95 Bar), while in the USA, CNG Tanks are rated for 3600 psi (248.21 Bar). What are these tanks made of you say? Usually Aluminum or Plastic/Rubber liners with a Carbon Fiber Composite Wrap (Hoop and Helical wrapping).

Modern Reactor Vessels can weigh in the 500 ton range and beyond. Those would be some large factories.

Image

(Dresden-2 reactor SOURCE)

The Stainless Steel cladding that helps prevent corrosion are usually around 1/4 inch. There is also Neutron reflectors made of Graphite, Beryllium, Tungsten Carbide, or other materials around the core to help wrangle in those wild neutrons while also protecting the reactor vessel from “belt” embrittlement.

The first CNG Tanks were in the mid thousand pound range. As the metal was replaced with lighter ones, or even plastic/rubber liners, along with the carbon fiber wraps a tank that used to weigh 1200 pounds could now weigh just over 100 with the same ratings.

Image

So my plan, pick the correct materials for the temperature flux, corrosion, and neutron reflecting materials for the tank liner, then wrap that baby up in some appropriately rated Carbon Fiber/Other Fibers which should reduce the weight of those suckers to the 21st century.

Image

As you can see, geometries are not really limited.

Again, I know the MSR reactors won’t need giant pressurized reactor vessels, but applying the same concepts to the pressurized piping in the steam loops could help cheapen or at least strengthen the system.

Now the fun part! Discuss, Refine, and get the Creative Juices going. Good, Bad, or even ugly let it be known in the comments.

PROMPT – I haven’t done one of these in a while, so write a letter to your local congress person (from a fictional person POV) about a technology that could benefit from Carbon Fiber Wrapping.

UPDATES, Employment Pivot, and Prompt

I know it has been a long time since I have posted on aJonster and I apologize about the amount of silence that has occurred, but that does not mean I have been idle with that time.

Over the next couple posts I will try to explain what has happened in my life that has caused such a great shift in my professional development, while also turning this audience onto a bunch of new companies and technologies I have stumbled across during my time of research.

First, ProNutria has an update page where its landing page used to be. I wonder what kind of announcements will be coming out in the next couple of weeks? I am hoping for their first Protein product, but it could really be anything, so fingers and toes will be crossed for that.

Image

A few hints to this so called Pivot. First a Vocabulary Word.

Carbon Fiber – A reinforcing fiber produced by the pyrolysis of an organic precursor fiber, such as PAN (polyacrylonitrile), rayon or pitch, in an inert atmosphere at temperatures above 1800 degrees F.  The term carbon is often used interchangeably with the term graphite, but the fibers differ.  Carbon fibers are typically carbonized at about 2400 degrees F and contain 93 – 95% carbon.  Carbon fibers can be converted to graphite fibers by graphitization at 3450 F to 4500 degrees F after which they contain more than 99% elemental carbon.  Carbon fibers are known for the light weight, high strength, and high stiffness.

Image

Second Hint, a Company Profile.

Yulex Corporation is revolutionizing rubber and energy production through sustainable, agricultural-based, latex allergy friendly solutions. The company harnesses crop science, zero-waste bioprocessing, and materials science for the production of biomaterials from the renewable, industrial crop guayule. Yulex’s biorubber, resin and biomass materials have medical, consumer, industrial and bioenergy applications. The company is based in the U.S. Southwest and has a growing global footprint. – See more HERE

Image

Third Hint, a curve ball.

OriginOil’s Electro Water Separation™ (EWS) system is a continuous process to efficiently remove oils, suspended solids, insoluble organics and bacteria. Electro Water Separation seamlessly integrates two proprietary technologies: Single Step Extraction™ and Electro Flotation.

Initial Algae Application

EWS was developed for the algae industry to solve the critical problem of how to extract microscopic algae out of up to 1000 times its weight in water at high speed, while using neither chemicals nor excessive energy. The first custom systems delivered to our pilot partnership only delivered extraction, relying on other vendors for the concentration stage. Later, we developed and integrated Electro Flotation, and we can now achieve the concentration level of at least 5% algae solids.

Frack Water Cleanup

EWS has since found a promising direction in removing petroleum and other organic compounds from water used in oil and gas production. Recently in third party testing, EWS recovered 98% of hydrocarbons in a test sample of frack flowback water. Frack flowback describes water used in a drilling process called ‘hydraulic fracturing’, or ‘fracking’. This test sample was taken from an oil well from which 200,000 gallons of oil-rich water flowed back over a period of two weeks. The water resources firm PACE Engineering supplied the sample and analyzed the results shown in this photo.

Additional applications are expected in industrial waste water recovery.

Image

Fourth Hint, I know this is breaking the literary rule of everything in threes, but I don’t care.

Glide SUP (Stand Up Paddleboards)

WANT A HIGH-PERFORMANCE, AMERICAN-MADE SUP BOARD THAT SCREAMS QUALITY AND VALUE?

If the answer is yes, we welcome you to join the thriving ecosystem of Glide enthusiasts across the country and globe -the SUP buyers, dealers, retailers and team riders whose passion and loyalty have fueled our rapid growth and made us the fastest growing manufacturer of SUP boards in the world.

HOW HAVE WE DONE THIS?

Inspired design 100%

Made in the USA

Versatile product line

Indestructability

Unparalleled performance

Compelling price points

And one more thing: we control every phase of the manufacturing process. This control provides a market agility that is unique in an industry dominated by off shore product. There is nothing nimble about waiting 8+ weeks for a container of imported Chinese boards to arrive and clear customs. At Glide, not a single element of the production cycle is outsourced. It all happens at our factory in Salt Lake City, the largest board manufacturing operation in the country. It’s this control of process flow and inventory that has made Glide such a trusted business partner to our dealers and retailers throughout the world.

But none of this means much of anything in the absence of product value. “Made in the USA” wilts in the market if it comes at a premium cost. Glide boards outperform and outlast other SUP brands by order of magnitude, and at price points that are in line with (and oftentimes lower) than the vast majority of the competition.

And we’ve got a board for every type of paddling you’re looking to do: recreational flat-water, high adrenaline whitewater, surf, race, yoga—you name it. We even make multi-purpose boards that do it all.

Image

SO WITH ALL THE HINTS, can you guess what kind of change has happened in my life?

Now for a little prompt.

PROMPT – Your character is 95% done with something majorly important in their life, now throw life at them to force their own pivot.

Thanks for being there,

Addictive Andrew

ProNutria.com Getting a little Attention + Prompt

ProNutria.com
http://nextbigfuture.com/2013/06/cellular-based-precise-nutrition.html

This is all.

I just can’t resist posting an article about ProNutria.com.

PROMPT – if you could produce enough food to make it almost free, what would your character switch their disposable income on?

Have a great Weekend!

Andrew

DOE’s Regional Clean Energy Business Winner – SiNode Systems and PROMPT

Good Monday All,

I apologize for the absence over the weekend but I had to graduate from College real quick. I thought to get back on track, I would do a Company Profile on one of the Department of Energy’s Regional Clean Energy Business winners SiNode Systems. Just check out all the giant checks they won at the 2013 Rice Business Plan Competition!

Image

 

Here is the Caption to that picture – 

400 applicants. 42 selected competitors. 15 semi-finalists. 1 winner.

SiNode Systems took home the grand prize at the 2013 Rice Business Plan Competition, the world’s richest and largest business plan competition. In total, SiNode was awarded over $800,000 in prizes generously sponsored by the GOOSE Society of Texas, the OWL Investment Group, Mercury Fund, Greater Houston Partnership, U.S. Department of Energy, Trailblazer Capital, PKF of Texas, Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, BBVA Compass, Miller, Egan, Molter & Nelson LLP, and others.

The competition was an incredible experience for the SiNode team, and we would like to thank the organizers and sponsors of the event, especially the Rice Alliance and Northwestern alumnus Brad Burke.

And I am Back

Congratulations SiNode Systems for winning the Western Southwest Region in the DOE’s competition! I wish you luck on the upcoming National Competition on June 11th and 12th. Here are the links to get to the information I first stumbled across that sparked this post.

Regional Winners of University Clean Energy Business Competition

Portal to the DOE’s Clean Energy Business Contest 

Okay, so for those wondering why I am writing about SiNode Systems, here is the DOE’s little blurb they used to describe the company for the competition.

Northwestern University, SiNode Systems

SiNode’s lithium battery anode technology addresses the two aspects of battery improvement, energy capacity and power density. SiNode Systems’ Si-graphene composite anode provides up to a ten-fold increase in energy capacity compared to the conventional graphite anode, and can increase energy capacity of a complete battery assembly by 50 percent to 100 percent. The graphene scaffolding of the anode provides for more flexible support and a faster charging of the battery, up to ten-fold increase.

Image

From the SiNode System’s Technology Page

The technology utilizes a composite material of silicon nano-particles and graphene in a layered structure. In effect, the flexible graphene scaffolds of our composite materials eliminate the rapid degradation of performance associated with silicon-based anode materials. In addition, in-plane nano-engineered porosity is introduced to the graphene layers, allowing rapid ionic diffusion through the structure.

Distinct Attributs 

◦ mechanically flexible

◦ electronically conductive

◦ abundant charge carrying capacity

◦ excellent high-rate lithium-ion storage capabilities

Scalability

In comparison to other competing anode technologies, SiNode has a unique advantage as a highly scalable and low cost solution for large-scale production. Much of the synthesis procedure for porous graphene scaffold and the resulting composite relies on solution-based chemistry (modified Hummers’ method). Readily available industrial equipment such as drying oven and centrifuges can be used to maximize efficiency during scaled production. No specialized or custom-made machinery is necessary for any step of the production process.

Furthermore, the unique characteristics of our anode provide a number of manufacturing advantages and could eliminate the need for certain components required by current Li-ion batteries.

Image

 

Now I don’t really have to say much about how great it will be to have extended battery life. To be honest, this isn’t even my favorite new battery technology, especially in the Graphene field, that is for later. But, SiNode Systems is one of the farthest along, while also being very scalable, which are both important for rapid market penetration.

Since this is a Company Profile piece and not a regular article where I meander my way through the almost infinite possibilities, I want to provide all the links to the site to give quick access to all the pages they have listed.

Home Page

News Page

Technology Page

Company Page

Contact Page

And of course no article on aJonester.com would be complete without a PROMPT.

PROMPT – Would having 100% more battery, that charges very quickly, make your character more or less aware of their battery bar on their electronics?

I will be trying to get more articles like this one and the ones before this one out into the InterWebz so anyone that is as curious as me can at least have a quick read about the innovations coming down the pipeline.

Have a Great Monday,

Andrew

Joule Unlimited New Video!

Since I have an unnatural fascination with Joule Unlimited, Flagship Ventures, and David Berry I had to post this video.

SciFi Inspirational Websites and PROMPT!

Hey Everyone,

I wanted to put together a nice guide to MY future looking sources of creative inspiration. These websites aren’t secret but some of them are a little more on the down low. I will start with the more popular, well-known websites and break down to the more rare ones aimed at the underground scientific community, and throwing a few companies to follow at the end.

The first grouping of sites offer a wide range of announcements, reports, discoveries, and just interesting reads.

engadget.comgizmodo.comwired.com, and gizmag.com  – This grouping of sites offers a wide range of announcements, reports, discoveries, and just interesting reads into the technology and gadgets arenas.

technologyreview.com (MIT), newscientist.compopsci.com, arstechnica.com, and popularmechanics.com – This group focuses a little more on the scientific.

i09.com – This is a sister site of Gizmodo, but it is worth running into the strange articles and announcements found there.

ted.com and wesolveforx.com – Great sites for cutting edge VIDEO presentations. We Solve for X is a newer site sponsored by Google – the videos are focused on new discoveries in technology and how to apply them to big world problems. TED is a huge resource of all kinds of interesting stuff.

nextbigfuture.com and acceler8or.com – These are the more down low websites for interesting reading to expand and inspire.

I have to apologize, this post is also an informational probe into the viewers of these Prompts. If any other website or company provides some awesome articles, POST THE LINKS IN THE COMMENTS SECTION to share with everyone else.

These are companies that have products or innovations that can set the creative energies boiling!

SpaceX.com and Telsa.com – Of course Elon Musk has to be listed in this section. Check out the forums for some fun reading.

chamtechops.com – Spray on antenna. This technology is one of Google’s We Solve for X featured technology talks. In his talk, Anthony Sutera seems to be asking anyone in the audience to collaborate with him to make new stuff.

jouleunlimited.com and EssentientDavid Berry is an amazing man, in charge of at least six companies. These two companies will transform our world. Both companies have physical plants and will blow your mind.

bigelowaerospace.com – Inflatable modules for space! This site doesn’t update too often but the Forums are usually a great area for discussion.

energyfromthorium.com – This is not a company but a crazy source of information on nuclear energy. Thorium Remix 2011 (2012 seeking funding) is a good primer for information about Thorium, but their forum and Facebook page updates with new information all the time. Flibe Energy is one company working on solving the short-sighted vision of previous presidents.

I am trying to think of other sites or companies that need to be on this list, but I am getting hungry. Just for kicks, here is a Prompt!

PROMPT – Remember Luddites? Write a Luddite prophet in a future heavy civilization, who uses technology to spread their message.

Hope this is a great resource for those days that the internets have turned into a slug of a time.

Have a great day,

Sir Drewster III