Phoenician Energy’s aluminum-air batteries won a place in Yara Marine X’s accelerator program for startups working for greener shipping, Yara Marine X announced recently.
Yara Marine Technologies is headquartered in Oslo, Norway, and has offices in Sweden, China and Singapore. The company’s goal since being founded in 2010 is to enable a greener maritime industry through technology such as high-quality scrubber systems.
The six-month accelerator program is tailored to give Phoenician Energy the capital, market and network it needs to develop and pilot aluminum-air batteries for the maritime industry.
According to the Yara Marine X website, the winner gets a benefits package including a $10,000 selection fund and paid living and office expenses during the program if employees choose to relocate to Oslo. Phoenician Energy also will receive a tailored program designed to make its aluminum-air batteries market-ready through development and pilot stages.
At the end of the program, Yara Marine may choose to offer a $150,000 investment in exchange for a 10% stake in Phoenician Energy.
Phoenician Energy is working to provide clean energy technology for the maritime industry. After months of searching for the right partner, Yara Marine Technology chose Phoenician Energy among several applicants to be part of the program, according to a release.
“Phoenician Energy’s use of aluminum-air battery technology for the maritime industry triggered our scientists’ curiosity. Their container battery is especially interesting. The concept taps into several recent trends and developments, such as circular economy and electrification of marine vessels,” Thomas Koniordos, CEO of Yara Marine Technologies, said in the release.
Aluminum-air batteries combine aluminum, oxygen and water to produce electricity when aluminum reacts with oxygen in the air.
“Al-air batteries have one of the highest energy densities of all batteries, with more than four times the capacity of the conventional lithium-ion battery,” Udi Erell, founder and president at Phoenician Energy, said in a statement. According to Erell, aluminum-air batteries do not degrade over time or lose their capacity when not in use. He said that aluminum-air batteries are inherently safe, and the higher density equates to longer ranges and more available space for cargo that can generate revenue.
According to the release, Phoenician Energy developed a 4.8 MWh aluminum-air battery system in a 20-foot shipping container for marine applications.
Phoenician Energy said it replaces the entire battery system instead of recharging it onboard, eliminating downtime needed to recharge. Consumed batteries are taken from the ship and reequipped with new aluminum, according to the release.
“We believe this technology may have an important role to play in a greener maritime industry for future generations,” Koniordos said.