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Friday, 06 May 2016 09:03

One atom at a time


An Australian nanotech company has worked out a way to increase Lithium-Ion battery capacity by as much as 50%. It is one to watch as it may well be behind battery powered smart devices that work for much longer.

Nano-Nouvelle is an Australian based materials technology company developing products for its 3D nano-porous conductive membranes for energy, environmental, chemical and biomedical applications. Its top scientists are pushing the boundaries of functional materials with patent filings around its core technology. The first products in development are high-performance battery electrodes, which can increase energy storage capacity by as much as 50%.

CEO, Stephanie Moroz has focused her career on developing and commercialising clean energy technologies. Following her studies in Engineering Physics, she worked on hydrogen fuel cells in Canada and Germany, automotive engine systems to reduce pollution and fuel consumption in France, and solid state hydrogen storage in Australia. She combines a strong technical background with a range of business experience from large multinationals to VC-backed start-ups.

Founded in 2011, the Sunshine Coast Queensland-based company was named last week as number 45 on the inaugural Tech Pioneers 50 list. Other Tech Pioneers include software powerhouse Atlassian (1), cloud accounting leader Xero (2), Freelancer (7) and online graphic design trailblazer Canva (5). The full list of 50 is at the end of the article.

Interestingly The Tech Pioneers come from New South Wales – 27, Victoria – 9, Queensland – 2, and NZ – 12 and 15 are Software as a Service (SaaS), 21 are ‘marketplace’, and five are hardware companies. The PDF with an overview of all on the list is here. It is worth a read.

Read on for more of this company’s technology.

It is currently working with major battery manufacturers globally, including Japan, Korea, China, Europe, the US and Israel, to ensure its Nanode technology fits with their manufacturing processes and cell designs.

Its core technology is Nanotechnology - the manipulation of matter at an atomic and molecular scale. Nanotechnology works with materials, devices and other structures that have at least one dimension sized from 1–100 nm.  The variety of potential applications makes nanotechnology a key technology for the future.

Nano-Nouvelle has developed a functional material that benefits from the advantages of nanotechnology. The electrically conductive 3D nanoporous structure has a customisable surface area in the range of 0.5 to 5.0 m2/cm3.

Using well-understood processes, sequential coatings are applied to commercially available porous polymer substrates to create Nano-Nouvelle’s conductive membrane technology. This conductive membrane can be coated with active materials for numerous applications, ranging from electrochemical processes such as batteries, capacitors, and electrolysis, to other industrial applications including sensors, filters, catalysts, chemical processes, thermal management, photovoltaic and thermoelectric materials.

Last year, Nano-Nouvelle funded the commercialisation of its novel battery electrode materials by closing a $3.7 million Series C Financing round. The investment was led by existing investor Terra Rossa Capital along with private investors including Simon Hackett and Bradley Maguire.

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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