The Shell GameChanger Accelerator Powered by NREL (GCxN), a collaboration between Shell’s GameChanger program and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), recently announced its first cohort of grantees, which includes two startups run by current and alumni Cyclotron Road fellows: Antora Energy and Feasible. These and two other startups named in the inaugural GCxN cohort are developing long-term energy storage and control technologies for the energy grid of the future.
Cohort Four fellows Justin Briggs and Andrew Ponec, as well as Cohort Three fellow David Bierman, co-founded Antora Energy, which uses modified solar panels paired with hot carbon to build thermal batteries that efficiently store and deliver energy to the grid. “We’re excited to be working with NREL and Shell to tackle some of the challenges in making the electrical grid nimbler and inclusive of a range of energy sources,” said Antora CEO Andrew Ponec. “Affordable and effective energy storage is key to that endeavor.”
Feasible, co-founded by Cohort Three fellows Andrew Hsieh and Barry Van Tassell, uses sound waves and data analytics to improve the performance and safety of battery packs such as those used for grid energy storage. “We are grateful and excited for the opportunity to work with both NREL and Shell through the GCxN program,” said Andrew Hsieh, co-founder and CEO of Feasible, Inc. “This will allow us to leverage the expertise and resources of two incredible organizations as we take the next step in demonstrating our prototypes at a larger scale.”
Each startup in this inaugural GCxN cohort receives up to $250,000 in non-dilutive funding in the form of technical experts to aid in developing and demonstrating their technologies.
CGxN provides companies with support, expertise and seed funding, while they maintain the independence to make their own decisions. The program is funded by Shell’s GameChanger program, through which the company has supported energy technology startups since 1996. Rather than running a conventional open application cycle, GCxN identifies promising startup companies through an ecosystem of more than 40 cleantech business incubators, accelerators and universities, which includes Cyclotron Road.