Ocean Exchange Announces 2019 Innovation Winners
More than 100 ocean innovators and entrepreneurs competed for Ocean Exchange's annual innovation awards and funding.
By: Ocean Exchange
The finalists all demonstrated technologies or new business solutions that could generate economic growth and increase productivity while reducing the use of nature's resources and waste production, all with an emphasis on oceans, coastlines, shipping/logistics, and zero emissions.
The winner of the 2019 Broward College Innovation Award ($10,000 USD) is Celise, a provider of sustainable, eco-friendly foodservice disposables made from plant starches and pulps that replace and eliminate single-use plastic waste. Made from renewable resources, Celise products are compostable in commercial composting facilities within six months or biodegradable on their own in natural conditions between two to five years. The student-founder of Celise attends American University in Washington, DC.
The 2019 Orcelle® Award ($100,000 USD) was presented to Noon Energy for its innovative work developing a new battery that uses ultra-low-cost storage media and can match the high energy efficiency of lithium-ion technology. Chris Graves, Noon Energy founder and CEO, is a fellow with Cyclotron Road, which supports entrepreneurial scientists and engineers as they turn their research into transformative products that address global challenges. Cyclotron Road is a program of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in partnership with the non-profit Activate.
As solar and wind power are growing rapidly and dominating new electricity generation around the world, new low-cost energy storage technologies are urgently needed to balance these inexpensive but intermittent renewables. Noon Energy is developing a new battery that uses ultra-low-cost storage media and can match the high energy efficiency of lithium-ion technology.
The Orcelle® Award, sponsored by Wallenius Wilhelmsen, is for the innovation that creates greatest environmental and business value for Wallenius Wilhelmsen's activities as they relate to any of the six UN Sustainable Development Goals that are relevant to the Scandic shipping company's business. (UN SDGs 3, 8, 9, 10, 13 and 14).
The 2019 Neptune Award ($100,000 USD) was presented to Opus 12 for its innovative work developing a novel device to turn CO2 into chemicals and fuels at a lower cost and with lower greenhouse gas emissions than conventional production.
The Opus 12 team, based in Berkeley, CA (USA), has demonstrated the production of 16 high-value chemical products and is focused currently on producing carbon monoxide (CO)/syngas, ethylene, and methane from CO2. Two Opus 12 co-founders were part of the inaugural cohort at Cyclotron Road in 2015-2017.
The Neptune Award, sponsored by the Marine Research Hub of South Florida and the Littlejohn Family Foundation is given to the solution that advances our understanding of the ocean and helps minimize our impact on these resources, even while using them for human benefit, resulting in more resilient bodies of water including healthy marine life and coastlines.
"The Marine Research Hub of South Florida congratulates Noon Energy and Opus 12 for winning the Orcelle® and Neptune awards, respectively. We are proud to have partnered with Ocean Exchange on transitioning this transformational conference to Fort Lauderdale and to have helped sponsor the prestigious Neptune Award," said Phil Purcell, vice president of the Marine Research Hub and CEO/president of the Marine Industries Association of South Florida. "The talented finalists and their innovative solutions captivated our local community, as well as Florida's Lt. Governor, Jeanette Nunez, and we're all eager to see them succeed."
The 2018 winners of the Orcelle and Neptune Awards were Jolt Energy Storage Technologies and Coral Vita, respectively.
More about Ocean Exchange
Ocean Exchange™ is the international platform for accelerating the adoption of and the transfer of solutions across industries that positively impact environments, economies and health while respecting cultures around the world. Each year, Ocean Exchange seeks innovative, proactive and globally scalable sustainable solutions with working prototypes and applications that can cross industries, economies and cultures. Experts from around the world review and select the top solutions that offer the greatest ability to transform industries. In addition to the funders mentioned above, major sponsors are Gulfstream, JM Family Enterprises, Braid Theory and Oceaneering.