More Noise, Less Substance
There is a lot of noise today about companies globally trying to build to stay relevant in the ever-evolving New Energy Industry. The reality is that most of the work is unfortunately directed towards creation of a ‘new devil’ to supersede an existing one. The real goal needs to be centered around building traceability of the Carbon Footprint by each of these global powerhouses to create a truly net carbon neutral product that would aim to achieve the ambitious climate goals that each government has set over the next decades. As things stand, we are striving towards carbon neutrality without firm goals of traceability through the supply chain.
An Existential Crisis Looms
Each & every climate report has further validated the fact that we are at a very crucial juncture for our species,with the extent of climate change being close to levels that would eventually lead the Earth to being uninhabitable. Nonetheless, adding clean & renewable energy is only one of the many steps required to address this larger problem. The majority of emissions is being contributed by Developing & Undeveloped nations, where awareness at the grassroot levels is still very rudimentary. If we have to solve this crisis, we need to have more awareness centers in these nations. Understandably, setting ‘Climate Goals’ or enforcing bans on ‘ICE applications’ are not the most appropriate solutions for countries still struggling for a stable source of energy to run households let alone industries or the economy. Therefore, to actually make a real impact in these ecosystems, there needs to be a collective disruptive approach involving all stakeholders both locally & globally involved that would streamline the entire process.
Creation of a Circular Economy
We hear numerous terms like, ‘The Million Mile Battery’ & ‘Afterlife of Spent Batteries’ but little is being done to address the underlying issues. The historical legacy of Recycling has been centered around Pyrometallurgy,where battery metals (Namely lead Acid) are recycled using furnaces that result in higher carbon emissions than during the entire lifecycle of the battery itself. We, at Naya Energy, are building a foundation more suited for extraction of valuable metals found in batteries that are finite & can be lost forever. While the world has achieved success in Recycling Lead at over 99.7%, the advancement in batteries centered around base metals like Lithium, Cobalt, Nickel, etc is still very much in the premature stage. We aim to use hydrometallurgy accompanied with a proprietary solution to extract these metals to over 70%, thereby adding back to the supply chain without the fear of being lost forever.
Reduction of Dependency on Finite Metals
In order to truly achieve a mass market clean energy strategy, it is imperative that we move away from the existing widely-used battery base metals. At Naya Energy, we have been experimenting with metals that are renewable, widely available & at a fraction of the cost of batteries largely being used presently around the world. One such example would be Metal-Air Batteries, which are increasingly gaining traction & have also been called by some as the ‘Holy Grail’ (Zinc-Air). Although the real challenge for these applications has been cyclability & Energy Density, we are achieving increasingly positive results in Energy Storage Applications & eventually hope to stay on path to garner success in Mobility Applications as well. Interestingly, to put things in perspective, the per kWh cost of these batteries is in the $20-30 range, which is a fraction of the cost of Lithium Applications (LiFePo4, NMC, etc) that are used widely. This is an approach we strongly believe is worth taking & exploring alongside the, ‘Solid-State Battery’ which has been a quest most firms are putting their entire R&D behind.
The Need to Adapt a Bottomline & Sustainable Approach
There are numerous companies built on unrealistic valuations & over ambitious goals. At Balu, we have bootstrapped our R&D since 2017 to build a foundation which our stakeholders can be truly proud of. We have nurtured homegrown talent & not let our R&D spend affect our Bottomline. Our vision is to build a ‘Zebra’ rather than a ‘Unicorn’, so that our company can stay sustainable & relevant in a time where companies are valued based on utopian targets and projections. We will continuously strive to build each of our New Energy Verticals on the strong principals & pillars of success that have made Balu a truly global enterprise for over 3 decades.