Monday, October 31, 2011
News Brief: CMU Startup Aquion Receives World Technology AwardAquion Energy, a Carnegie Mellon University startup, received the 2011 World Technology Award in Energy for its work in creating a safe, reliable and affordable way to store energy. Aquion was recognized over more than 40 other nominees, including General Electric, First Solar and 1366 Technologies.
Aquion received the award last week from The World Technology Network (WTN), a global organization focused on the business and science of bringing emerging technologies of all types into reality. The WTN's membership is comprised of approximately 1,000 members from more than 60 countries, judged by their peers to be the most innovative in the technology world.
Founded by CMU Materials Science and Engineering Professor Jay Whitacre, Aquion has developed a novel sodium-ion battery optimized for stationary storage applications with a targeted commercial release of 2012. It's been an exciting autumn for the company, which landed $30 million in private equity from three venture capital firms on Sept. 7, then snagged Pittsburgh Technology Council's "Start-up of the Year" award in late September.
Aquion is the latest entrepreneurial success story from CMU, which has helped create more than 300 companies and 9,000 jobs in the last 15 years. The university's Greenlighting Startups initiative, a portfolio of CMU incubator groups, is designed to further speed innovation from the research lab to the marketplace.