Nobel Laureate and former US Secretary of Energy Dr. Steven Chu has joined the Board of Directors of Inventys Thermal Technologies, according to a press release from the Vancouver, British Columbia-based company backed by venture firm, The Roda Group.
Inventys is the developer of a pioneering method for capturing CO2 from coal and natural gas power plants, the proprietary VeloxoTherm process. The system costs less than one-third of what existing post-combustion CO2 capture technologies cost and reportedly will allow for mainstream adoption of enhanced oil recovery and carbon sequestration.
Captured CO2 can be injected underground for Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) and Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR). It also can be used for industrial applications, including chemical manufacturing.
“Carbon capture is a critical technology to move us to a clean energy future and Inventys has developed a practical, compact, and low cost system that allows existing fossil fuel power plants to dramatically lower their carbon emissions,” Dr. Chu said.
VeloxoTherm also uses much less energy than competing systems, resulting in a $15 per ton of CO2 capture cost, one-fifth less the cost of current processes, the company noted. In addition, the Inventys system is less than one-tenth the size of other systems, meaning it is compact enough to allow for its retrofitting to existing power plants via direct connection to the flue stack.
Dr. Chu is currently the William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Physics and Professor of Molecular and Cellular Physiology at Stanford University. Before serving as Secretary of Energy in the first Obama administration, Dr. Chu was Director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) and Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the University of California, Berkeley.
He won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1997 for “development of methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light,” noted the release.
“Dr. Chu brings an incredibly broad expertise to Inventys — from molecular interactions to the macroeconomics of energy systems, and everything in between. We are thrilled to have him join our board,” Andre Boulet, CEO of Inventys, was quoted as saying.
Inventys Thermal Technologies has raised capital from Sustainable Development Technology Canada and Alberta’s Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation, which invested $3M into the company in September, 2012.
To read the full New York Times article cited in the story, click here