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Oregon Freeze Dry and EnerG2 Announce New Battery Venture

September 21, 2009

Albany to host first facility in the world dedicated to the commercial-scale production of nano-engineered synthetic high-performance carbon electrode material.

The last few days we have been covering Valley news related to the electric vehicle innovation. Now we learn that what would seem like an unlikely partnership between Oregon Freeze Dry, the 1962 Albany founded company involved in fast freezing of fruits for breakfast cereals and military rations and Seattle based EnerG2. EnrG2  uses a state-of-the-art scientific approach to energy storage materials have been backed over the past five years by the public and private sectors.

Below is  an article from Albany Democrat-Herald about the new venture and the PR release from EnerG2.

Posted: Thursday, August 6, 2009 12:00 am

Albany plant will make revolutionary material for batteries

By Hasso Hering

Albany Democrat-Herald

Oregon Freeze Dry plans to build a factory on its Albany site to make a battery material the company president says could change the world.

Although contracts have not yet been signed, Freeze Dry has formed a partnership with EnerG2, a Seattle startup, to produce a revolutionary carbon-based material that – its developers say – can store and release electricity in much greater amounts and speeds than conventional batteries.

The U.S. Department of Energy Wednesday announced a $21.3 million grant to EnerG2 to build the Albany plant. Oregon Freeze Dry and EnergG2 together will invest an additional $7 million.

Oregon Freeze Dry is a pioneer and the world leader in the research and application of low-temperature, low-pressure preservation of materials. Since 1963, we have developed innovative solutions to meet the specific product requirements and applications of our customers.

Oregon Freeze Dry is a pioneer and the world leader in the research and application of low-temperature, low-pressure preservation of materials. Since 1963, we have developed innovative solutions to meet the specific product requirements and applications of our customers.

Herb Aschkenasy, president of Oregon Freeze Dry, said today he didn’t have high hopes that the project would be approved when the partners submitted their application, and he credited “somebody at the Department of Energy who knew what he was looking at.”

Freeze drying, a field in which the Albany food company is a world leader, is essential to making the carbon material.

“This is another area where freeze drying is the key step in the creation of a valuable end product,” Aschkenasy said. “And this end product could change the world.”

Better batteries would make electric or hybrid vehicles more practical over long distances.

The new plant will sit on Freeze Dry’s 36-acre property in southwest Albany within sight of Aschkenasy’s office. It will feature “two very large vacuum chambers” and associated equipment, he said.

In Seattle, EnerG2 said the plant would take 18 months to build and create 25 to 50 new jobs. Aschkenasy cautioned that whether the jobs are additional to the roughly 300 jobs at Freeze Fry depends on trends in other parts of the company’s business.

The carbon material at issue is used to make ultracapacitors. Aschkenasy, a chemist by training, said it has an enormous internal surface that can store and release vast amounts of electrons.

From Seattle, EnerG2 said the Albany plant will be the “first in the world dedicated to the commercial-scale production of nano-engineered synthetic high-performance carbon electrode material. This material is the most important ingredient in ultracapacitor energy storage devices, which are used in electric and hybrid vehicles.”

For complete article…

EnerG2 focuses its efforts and attention on three core carbon material groups.

EnerG2 focuses its efforts and attention on three core carbon material groups.

COMPANY WILL BUILD CUTTING-EDGE FACILITY FOR HIGH-PERFORMANCE MATERIALS THAT WILL IMPROVE NEXT-GENERATION VEHICLES’ EFFICIENCY, RANGE AND AFFORDABILITY

SEATTLE – August 5, 2009 – EnerG2, a Seattle based company focused on introducing advanced nano-structured materials for next- generation energy storage breakthroughs, today announced that the United States Department of Energy has awarded the company $21.3 million in Federal stimulus funds allocated for makers of advanced automotive batteries and energy storage technologies.

The funds will be used to help build the first facility in the world dedicated to the commercial-scale production of nano-engineered synthetic high-performance carbon electrode material. This material is the most important ingredient in ultracapacitor energy storage devices, which are used in electric and hybrid vehicles.

EnerG2 will partner with Oregon Freeze Dry, a current manufacturing partner, in the construction of the facility in Albany, Oregon. OFD will bring deep experience and expertise to the project and will help accelerate the benefits that the plant will bring to the automotive industry.

EnerG2 web site

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