Potential Innovations for TransTech Energy Start-Ups


There are great opportunities in this country to build new companies that meet challenges presented by transitions over the coming decades to low carbon, competitive, and globally sustainable economies of the future.

We are looking for additional start-up companies, entrepreneurs, innovators, and manufacturers to work with the investment community, project developers, fossil energy industries, and government agencies to realize these opportunities.

The goal is to promote investment in and nurturing of new companies and commercializable projects that can provide solutions to energy, environmental, and economic development challenges such as creating new jobs and more competitive industries.

For starters, here are 25 examples of innovations that could be the basis for TTE start-ups, commercializable projects, and strategic partnerships with existing companies:

  • New chemical pathways for converting shale gas to low-cost chemical feedstocks
  • Technologies that improve the approximate 6% rate of reuse of industrial waste water
  • Industrial applications of hybrid fossil/renewable energy systems such as coal/biomass co-firing and solar/natural gas turbines
  • Fast growing grasses, trees, or other energy crops for biomass energy production or conversion to liquid or gaseous fuels
  • Energy recycling systems for efficiently capturing and utilizing waste heat, vented pressure drops, and/or flared gases
  • New construction materials or building designs that significantly improve building energy efficiency
  • Technologies for long-term storage of heat energy
  • Conversion of industrial by-products and waste materials to value-added construction materials or feedstocks for other industry sectors
  • Lightweight, high-strength metals or composite materials that could improve energy efficiency of vehicles
  • Inventions that would improve upon the ~21.5% fuel energy utilization for a typical IC engine automobile
  • New types of batteries that improve upon the energy density of automotive lithium ion batteries
  • Materials or manufacturing processes to make lower-cost, high-pressure tanks for on-board storage of natural gas or hydrogen
  • Electricity storage technologies and/or sensor and control systems that help maintain stability of a grid with numerous intermittent power sources
  • Use of natural gas fuel cells for distributed energy generation in off-grid locations
  • Enhanced electrical systems, backup electricity storage, and power quality support services for power generators
  • Advanced turbine/generator technologies for highly efficient CHP units for industrial or building applications
  • Applications of advanced manufacturing processes such as 3-D printing (additive manufacturing) that could revolutionize production
  • Expanded recovery and utilization of landfill gas
  • Technologies for capturing and productively utilizing CO2 from coal and natural gas power plants, as well as from energy intensive industries such as production of chlor-alkali, aluminum, blast furnace coke, and cement
  • Expanded use of CO2 for enhanced recovery of oil and/or as a heat transfer medium for geothermal energy
  • Materials for low-cost sorbent-based CO2 separation in carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS)
  • High-performance computer modeling to evaluate CCUS designs
  • Advanced materials or manufacturing processes that improve upon the 14% – 17% efficiency of solar cells for converting sunlight to electricity
  • Innovative wind turbine designs to improve efficiency and expand use of wind power generation
  • Other innovations that reduce Greenhouse gas emissions, increase industrial competitiveness, promote advanced manufacturing, and/or enable more efficient buildings and industry

Who should attend:

Innovators and entrepreneurs: Pitch your company or project to investors, potential strategic partners, and project developers

Investors: Find emerging transitional energy and environmental technology companies with near term payback potential

Energy companies and manufacturers: Develop strategic partnerships with start-up companies and project developers

University students: Participate in the Student TransTech Energy Business Concept Paper Competition

All: Join the discussion! Let’s build on the momentum of TransTech and generate some excitement about the possibilities for new companies, advanced manufacturing, and competitive industries!