🔋 BATTERIES: Scientists at Argonne National Laboratory demonstrated techniques to peer inside a lithium-ion battery as it operates and do real-time measurement of reactions. They were able to precisely measure the movement of ions — electrically charged molecules — through a lithium-ion battery.
- Scientists previously were not able to precisely track ions’ real-time movement in batteries. They would send a current through a battery and analyze what happened afterward.
- Better understanding ion movement can help scientists change that movement to create batteries for specific uses. Specially catered batteries would operate and charge optimally for their individual use and could prove beneficial for a plethora of applications including electric vehicles and cell phones.
- “For years we wrote papers about what happens inside a battery, since we couldn’t see the things inside,” Venkat Srinivasan, deputy director of Argonne’s Joint Center for Energy Storage Research, said in a news release. “I always joked that whatever I said must be true, since we couldn’t confirm it. So for decades we have been looking for information like this, and it challenges people like me who have been making the predictions,”
- Iowa City-based agtech business Rantizo raised $7.5 million in Series A funding to speed company expansion, reports AgFunderNews. The startup’s technology combines drones, a software platform, and imaging for crop spraying that is more precise, efficient, and environmentally conscious.
- Texas-based Corn Board Manufacturing is partnering with Wisconsin-based engineering and architectural firm McMahon Associates to build a $15 million facility in Iowa that manufactures environmentally friendly shipping pallets from corn stover — the plant debris left in the field after harvesting — reports the Des Moines Register.
- The director of the Great Lakes Bioenergy Resource Center and other experts explain in Agri-View how bioeconomies that incorporate agtech could create more economic opportunities in Wisconsin’s rural communities. For example, large companies like Walmart and Google want to purchase electricity from renewable sources, which could include anaerobic digestors at or near farms.
📈 INVESTMENT: Today the city of Chicago launched Startup Chicago, a database of more than 100 local startups seeking funding. It is intended to serve as a resource for venture capital firms looking to invest in Chicago’s tech scene. Caporus Technologies, FLEx Lighting, Mycocycle, and NanoGraf Technologies are among the numerous cleantech startups included in the database.
🧪 RESEARCH: Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity launched a $9 million initiative to expand access to wet lab space for startups, university researchers, incubators, and corporations.