More news is trickling out about Tesla’s gigafactory — Japanese battery partners could pony up $1 billion for it. Read more »
The design team at Khan Academy is helping lay the foundation for a revolution in education. Read more »
Introducing Granular, a startup bringing a new class of farming software to farmers. Read more »
A new battery innovation borrows from nature and could solve some big problems with using silicon in lithium in batteries. Read more »
Tesla says that the massive battery “gigafactory” is now in the plans. At the same time the electric car maker plans to significantly boost Model S production this year. Read more »
A look at the selfie like you’ve never seen before. Read more »
Production is expected imminently of the Fisker Karma, now that Chinese giant Wanxiang has purchased the electric car startup. Read more »
Chinese auto parts giant Wanxiang has won a bid for electric car maker Fisker for $149 million, and a judge has approved it. Will they restart production of the Karma and make the Atlantic soon? Read more »
This weekend the New York Times profiled a San Francisco-based startup called WaterFX, which is using mirrors to harness the sun’s rays to produce energy to clean water. The company has a $1 million project with the Panoche Water District in Central California to clean dirty water that lies under the surface of a wheat field.
China has long been the untapped wild card in cleantech. Now more entrepreneurs are making connections and raising funds from Asia. Read more »
The revolutionary solar farm in the Mojave desert is finally live. Here’s the story behind the tech, and an inside look at the launch. Read more »
It seemed like only yesterday when electric car company Tesla Motors hit $100 per share (well, a year ago). Now Tesla has bumped up over $200 per share this week, and is hovering around $196 in recent trading. Tesla will announce its latest earnings next week.
After much speculation Opower is planning on finally going public, according to a report. Read more »
Inexpensive, simple water cleaning tech could enable industries to reuse water over and over for manufacturing, mining and chemical creation. Startup Axine says it has something new. Read more »
Steve Vassallo and Trae Vassallo are among some of the more well-known cleantech and digital energy investors. Thing is, they’re married, are raising three kids, and also work at two different venture capital firms that sometimes compete on deals. Trae works for Kleiner Perkins and Steve for Foundation Capital. This is what it’s like to compete on a deal with your spouse:
“[W]e still laugh about competing over Opower; we had a sneaking suspicion that we were both engaged, based on the mystery trips back East.”
Robots are delivering the next generation of assembly lines and manufacturing, and it’s coming out of Silicon Valley. Read more »
Superconductors have some pretty amazing characteristics — one of them is that they repel magnets. In this demo at Google Solves for X this weekend, a scientists shows off this levitation trick, which could be used in many applications. Read more »
India has an ambitious goal to implement a massive amount of solar-powered water pumps. The project could reduce load on the neglected power grid, reduce costs for farmers, and lower carbon emissions. Read more »
Venture capital firm Khosla Ventures already has a long list of startups that it’s backed that are looking to make food more sustainable — like plant-based egg maker Hampton Creek Foods, organic candy company Unreal Candy, salt replacement product Nu-Tek Salt, and plant-based meat replacement startup Sand Hill Foods. But Fasto.co Exist has the details on the Khosla-backed vegan cheese startup Kite Hill, which uses nut milk instead of dairy to make artisanal cheeses.
DFJ was actually better than most at cleantech investing. Alas, even the solid ones have moved on. Read more »
Biofuel startup LS9 has been sold for $40 million to biodiesel maker Renewable Energy Group, reports MIT Tech Review. But before you congratulate them, note that LS9 raised $81 million over nine years, and still hadn’t reached a point where it was selling its green diesel to refiners. Last year the company brought in a new CEO, following restructuring and layoffs. Such are the long roads and harsh conditions facing biofuel startups. LS9 was backed by Khosla Ventures, Flagship Ventures, Lightspeed Ventures, and Chevron Technology Ventures.
Turns out cyber security might not be the biggest threat to the power grid after all. Read more »
Flow batteries are funky large batteries that use liquid tanks and pumps. There’s a new one being commercialized by a Silicon Valley startup. Read more »
Battery innovation might be the rage — and much needed — but it’s super hard for Silicon Valley and the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Read more »
Some of the largest solar farms in the world that use the sun’s rays to make heat are just now coming online in California — at the same time that the state is suffering one of the worst droughts in five hundred years. MIT Tech Review takes a look at why solar thermal farms are so water intensive, what’s to be done about it, and checks out some of the newer “dry cooling” technologies that are being used to reduce the water needed.
Facebook’s director of brand design, and former design director for four years, Kate Aronowitz, is leaving the company. She announced the move on, where else, Facebook, and says she’ll be working on projects that matter to her and spending more time with her family. Facebook has spent considerable resources building a design team, and acquiring design talent, but it’s been hard to keep some of the young design talent around.
The long road from development to market for Twin Creek’s materials slicing machines shows the complexities of cleantech. Read more »
Tesla CEO Elon Musk is so bullish on the Chinese market that he tells Bloomberg that Tesla might eventually build a local plant in the country. Whether that would be a production factory like its one in Fremont, California, or an assembly plant like its new one in Tilburg in the Netherlands, remains to be seen. Tesla priced its Model S in China last week at $121,000, including shipping and taxes.
Young up and coming startup AutoGrid now has new funding, new products and new customers for its big data energy prediction engine. Read more »
The Westly Group has backed energy software startup Simple Energy, leading a $6M round. Read more »
The solar industry was one of the fastest growing sectors in the U.S. last year, and grew 10 times faster than the average adding 24K new jobs. Read more »
Mark Rolston has launched a new design group after a two-decade career at design agency giant Frog. Read more »
Following some extreme plans, Xtreme Power files for Chapter 11. Read more »
Cable giant Comcast is exploring selling electricity as the fourth leg of an experimental “quadruple play” in Pennsylvania. According to the head of the state’s energy regulator, the cable giant is looking at partnering up with a retail electric supplier in the state to offer the product, possible in the fourth quarter of this year.
Tesla is opening up sales in the world’s largest auto market: China. It’s a bit of a risk, but the company thinks it’s worth it. Read more »
Google continues to invest in wind power for its data centers — this time in Finland. Read more »
Tesla road-trippers, time to take a spin across Europe with Tesla’s new fast chargers on the continent. Read more »
Is there a new dawn of smarter power grid tools emerging? Finally? Read more »
Former politicians usually don’t have good odds when it comes to picking the best startups to join. But with Steven Chu’s long scientific career in his pocket, he’ll probably do better than most. Read more »
MIT researchers have developed another interesting way to boost the efficiency of the typical silicon solar cell. Read more »