Materia Inc., a developer of green chemical platform technology, has announced it will be an industrial partner in a $6 million grant awarded late last year to the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). The Caltech grant is being funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation in support of establishing a Center for Bio-inspired Wind Energy.
The purpose of the center will be to carry out research, development and field testing of novel wind energy technologies inspired by engineering solutions found in nature. One area of study will result in the development of wind turbines inspired by the structural dynamics of trees.
Materia will be working in collaboration with Caltech professor Robert Grubbs in developing processes to rapidly create prototypes of promising turbine configurations. Grubbs' olefin metathesis catalyst technology will allow each component of a turbine to be tuned for different levels of compliance, weight or surface roughness based on the requirements of the design concept. This unique advantage will produce wind turbines that are more efficient, resulting in increased wind energy production.
SOURCE: Materia Inc.