MicroEra Power: Innovating Energy
March 2, 2018

At Quake, we're industry agnostic, investing in great ideas and great teams. Meet MicroEra Power, a company innovating the on-site power industry. MicroEra Power is integrating leading fuel cell and automotive technologies to create a best-in-class Smart Combined Heat and Power (CHP) System, CHPplus.

The goal of CHPplus is on-site power that pays for itself!

  • High reliability backup power
  • Save commercial customers up to 40% on energy costs
  • Low-cost, low-carbon hot water or thermally driven air conditioning
  • Support utilities in managing peak demand through Distributed Energy Resources
  • Integrate, where appropriate, with renewable energies while mitigating the need for extensive battery storage
  • Predictive/Adaptive Controls, Machine Learning, and Internet-of-Things to remotely monitor, control and optimize each system

In urban settings like New York City, CHPplus modeling shows payback in less than 3 years. Technology providing efficiencies to leap-frog current products is protected by patents and trade secrets. The enhanced engine is capable of running on natural gas or propane. The CHPplus 20-year life expectancy, high efficiency, comparably low price point, small footprint, thermal storage strategies, and long-term resiliency far out-perform extensive battery banks for addressing the intermittency challenges of renewable energies.  

MicroEra Power was founded in 2015 based on a series of patents held by Delphi Automotive, now Aptiv PLC. MicroEra Power Co-founders, Ellie Rusling, CEO, and James Grieve, CTO, have a full range of skills and experiences. Ellie has an extensive background in communications, leadership, and team-building. As she humbly puts it, she “interprets a genius CTO in a way the world can understand.” James has over 30 years of experience in the automotive and fuel cell industries. He is named on all 5 licensed patents, as well as over 30 more in related fields, and is in the process of filing 3 additional patents.

The CHPplus concept stems from James’ insights and expertise to bring leading-edge automotive and fuel cell technologies to on-site power for commercial buildings. Ellie and James serve on the Board of Directors for AHEAD Energy Corporation, 501(c)(3). Their experience with AHEAD validad long-term relevance to developing countries. Ellie and James see an opportunity to create technology to make clean energy accessible to those who may not have it.

Ellie and James intend to raise $1.5 million to build and demonstrate prototypes and set up a lean-manufacturing cell. Grant funding will support the next generation product, integrating a small fuel cell with a natural gas engine. They have active proposals submitted with Department of Energy’s ARPA-E, the most innovative branch.

MicroEra Power is really excited for the coaching, introductions, and network represented within Quake’s accelerator. They are looking to build MicroEra Power’s talent through consultants and hiring. According to the team, 2018 is the year to demonstrate their product and get in the market, as the energy market is in an accelerated transition.

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