EnerG2 kicks off production in Albany

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Energ2 CEO Rick Luebbe said the global market for carbon material like the Albany plant will produce is worth $2 billion.

Energ2 CEO Rick Luebbe said the global market for carbon material like the Albany plant will produce is worth $2 billion.

Energy storage company EnerG2 cut the ribbon on a new manufacturing facility in Albany Monday, aiming to boost new hires amid fanfare that drew local, state, national and congressional leaders to town.

The company is based in Seattle and focused on manufacturing nano-structured materials for next-generation energy storage applications. Its Albany facility, which broke ground in 2010, is the first manufacturing plant in the world dedicated to the commercial-scale production of engineered carbon material.

EnerG2 officials say the synthetic carbon will improve the performance of ultracapacitors and batteries, and replaces carbon otherwise mined from agricultural waste like coconuts, which is ill-suited to energy applications.

“As the rapid advancement of semiconductors enabled the revolution of the high-tech industry, continued applications of our carbon technology platform enable the energy storage revolution,” said CEO Rick Luebbe.

EnerG2 reports involvement with more than 60 significant companies focused on energy storage application development, companies they say will be more capable of deploying and developing energy storage ideas with synthetic carbon available.

The company employs 43 workers, 35 of them in Albany, and will continue to hire as production at the facility increases.

EnerG2 is the brainchild of Stanford University business school graduates Rick Luebbe, CEO, and Chris Wheaton, CFO and COO, who, after meeting at an alumni event in Seattle, drew on high-tech backgrounds and an interest in renewable energy to partner with Dr. Aaron Feaver, formerly a doctoral student in the University of Washington’s Material Science department to manufacture nano-materials.

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Lee van der Voo, lvdvoo*at*gmail.com, is a freelance writer for Sustainable Business Oregon.

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