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Southern California Energy Innovation Network

Accelerating Market Traction for Energy Startups

What is the Southern California Energy Innovation Network?

The Southern California Energy Innovation Network (SCEIN) is a free program for startups that are developing solutions to help California meet its energy goals. The program provides access to the resources and facilities of a number of regional partner organizations (listed below) and connections with industry in order to accelerate the commercialization of emerging energy technologies.

 

To date, 50 companies have been served by the Southern California Energy Innovation Network, 34 of which are currently active in the program. Together, these startups employ 268 people and have raised $51 million in private capital investment and $23.5 million in public capital investment since being accepted into the program.

 

The program is the result of a five-year, $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission awarded in 2016 to help advance California’s energy innovation industry.

 

What Business Services Are Available?

The Southern California Energy Innovation Network engages with partners, regional stakeholders, and other local service providers to offer free business services customized to the unique needs of each company, including:

 

  • Industry Connections
  • Research and Testing Facilities
  • Pilot Project Opportunities
  • Regulatory and Policy Guidance
  • Hardware Design and Simulation Support
  • Software/Data Analytics Support
  • Access to Student Intern Projects
  • Market Intelligence
  • Mentoring
  • Business Workshops
  • Pitch Deck Development
  • Presentation/PR Opportunities
  • Introductions to Capital Providers
  • Notification of Grant Solicitations and Prize Competitions
  • Business Service Referrals

 

Who is Eligible?

Southern California Energy Innovation Network applicants must meet all of the following criteria:

 

  1. The company must have a California business address
  2. The company must currently operate out of (or have near-term plans to do business in) one of the four counties in our territory: San Diego, Imperial, Riverside, or San Bernardino
  3. The company’s technology must be energy-related with the ability to benefit California’s electric ratepayers. It should fall under one of five general categories:

 

  • Energy Efficiency (envelope, lighting, HVAC, plug loads, pumps, energy management software)
  • Renewable Energy Generation (wind, solar, wave, geothermal, hydro)
  • Energy Storage (battery materials, electrochemical, mechanical, and thermal storage devices)
  • Smart Grid and Energy Services (demand response, energy IoT, smart metering, DERMS, data analytics, and microgrid technologies)
  • Clean Transportation (EV charging infrastructure and software platforms)

 

Important Technology Notes:

Intellectual Property: The IP for an applying company’s technology must be either owned or licensed by the applicant’s company.

Clean Transportation Technologies: Only electric vehicle infrastructure technologies and software platforms that manage the interaction of EVs with the grid are eligible for the program. SCEIN does not support companies with new vehicle or engine designs. For further details about this distinction, please contact zacd@cleantechsandiego.org.

Contact:

Marty Turock, Program Manager, martyt@cleantechsandiego.org

Zac Dobbin, Project Manager, zacd@cleantechsandiego.org

Get Energized. Apply Now.

Accepted Companies by Category

Smart Grid and Energy Services

Benchmark Labs: Combines grid level weather forecasting data with site-based IoT sensors, and uses proprietary AI software to provide precise asset-located weather
forecasting to optimize renewable energy generation and maximize financial benefits.

 

CleanSpark (graduate): Offers a suite of software, products, and services that support the optimized design and operation of distributed energy and microgrid projects. Their microgrid optimizer software performs in-depth simulation of multi-DER solutions based on economics, energy security, and sustainability, while their microgrid controller operates distributed assets in real-time to deliver those modeled outcomes once the system is installed. CleanSpark also offers UL-certified switchgear and distributed energy equipment.

 

Ivy Energy: A platform designed to help multifamily real estate investors increase their property values and secure additional monthly revenue while reducing tenant energy expenses. The company makes solar lucrative for multi-meter properties with shared roof space.

 

Kitu Systems: A comprehensive portfolio of communication solutions that enable coordination at scale of distributed energy resources (DER) with grid management systems. Kitu delivers EV charging and DER management services to residential and commercial customers, IEEE 2030.5 software to smart inverter and EVSE device manufacturers, and DERMS and aggregation services to utility customers.

 

Qubitekk: The US critical infrastructure is facing ever increasing cybersecurity threats and attacks. Qubitekk provides state-of-the-art cybersecurity protection for critical energy infrastructure using an unbreakable physics-based solution called the Quantum DataLoc transceiver. This product can be easily added into existing utility operations to reduce the cost and complexity of managing security keys.

 

XENDEE: XENDEE is lead by an award-winning team which has created a patented microgrid assessment and design software platform that simultaneously co-optimizes the techno-economic performance and power flow analysis of proposed energy resilience projects.

Energy Efficiency

Aquacycl: Aquacycl provides the only technology for treatment of high-strength organic wastewater without dilution. Aquacycl’s BETT™ systems eliminate primary sludge, offer net-neutral energy operations and guarantee permit compliance at operational costs that are 50%-95% lower than incumbent processes.

 

CanCoverIt: CanCoverIt has created a unique attic insulation product that provides fast, easy, and comprehensive protection of all metal ceiling fixtures –from can-lights to exchange fans and more– for maximum building energy efficiency, comfort, and safety.

 

Chilldyne: A leak-proof liquid cooling technology for data centers that uses a patented negative pressure design to save 20-40% on electricity costs and enables up to 10x higher density computing than traditional air-cooled systems.

 

Conectric: An inexpensive wireless mesh sensor network + open API software platform that autonomously delivers rich data to create smart buildings and save operating costs without complicated IT commissioning and at 3x cheaper than existing solutions.

 

Correlate (graduate): Offers an innovative energy program subscription called FacilityBid that helps small- and mid-sized businesses save energy. For only $99 per month, Correlate develops, implements, and manages an onsite energy program that creates positive cash flow, easily, and automatically.

 

General Engineering & Research (GE&R): A differentiated low-temperature cooling technology based on magnetic refrigeration that is lower-cost and more energy efficient than current technologies for cooling and storing cryogenic liquids.

 

Luciant: Developing state-of-the-art ceramic based phosphors for advanced lighting applications that can deliver a 750% increase in light output per specified area/volume over conventional polymer phosphors.

 

Occuspace: Provides a novel solution for reporting minute-by-minute indoor occupancy data that gives building owners the information they need to reduce total energy consumption by 10-20%, optimize space management, and improve the occupant experience.
Renewable Energy Generation
Controlled Thermal Resources: Controlled Thermal Resources is integrating geothermal power and lithium extraction technologies to produce the world’s most sustainable source of battery grade lithium to support electrification of transportation and generate low-cost, renewable energy.

 

Icarus RT: A snap-on technology that boosts the power output of solar PV panels by cooling the panels, capturing the heat that would otherwise be lost, and using the collected heat to generate and store additional power.

 

igrenEnergi: An intelligent Battery Management System (BMS) that makes EV and stationary batteries more economically viable by using dynamic balancing to address cell mismatch issues which cause reduced battery capacity.

 

Ocean Motion Technologies: Developing the Air-Energy Ocean Nexus (AEON) device, which can convert ocean wave energy to compressed air for power generation and energy storage.

 

Primo Energy (graduate): Designs and manufactures small, lightweight hybrid wind/solar systems that harvest energy in resource-constrained environments. Their flagship product is a flower-shaped energy platform called the EnergiPlant, which is an ideal solution for parks, universities, and business campuses looking for remotely-powered hubs with USB ports, LED lights, camera systems, 5G capabilities and more.

 

Uprise Energy: A 10 kW wind turbine that fits in a shipping container and sets up in one hour to produce clean, affordable electricity. The machine is most efficient in low wind speeds, allowing it to be conveniently located near customers that have historically relied on diesel generators for power.

Energy Storage
SiLi-Ion: Produces “drop-in”additives based on advanced graphite-infused silicon nanomaterials that immediately elevate Li-ion battery performance. SiLiIon‘s products are designed to ensure seamless integration into the current battery manufacturing process, and increase the energy density of commercial lithium ion batteries.

 

South 8 Technologies: A breakthrough electrolyte chemistry for next-generation rechargeable lithium batteries that serves a wider operating temperature range of ‑80 to +60°C, provides 80% greater energy density, and increases safety all at a 30% cheaper cost. This battery innovation is designed to power new aerospace and military technologies and serve the growing markets of all-weather grid storage, electric vehicles, and high-atmosphere drones.

UCAP Power: An exciting new startup that provides ultracapacitor-based solutions across a wide range of renewable markets. Ultracapacitor systems use sustainable based products offering a long-lasting (10 years +) source of reliable power storage that is targeted to replace lead-acid or other hazardous batteries in applications requiring dependable high power.  

 

VLI-EV: A one-stop sustainable and renewable energy solutions provider that offers proprietary controls software and high power, super long life battery energy storage systems (new and recycled battery modules) with up to 25 year warranties. These systems reduce customer energy and peak demand charge costs by 20-40%, as well as CO2 emissions.

Clean Transportation

Enel X – formerly eMotorWerks (graduate): An intelligent EV charging station manufacturer (JuiceBox) and owner and operator of JuiceNet, an IoT platform for the smart management of EV charging and other distributed energy storage facilities. Acquired by EnerNOC/Enel.

 

KIGT: KIGT manufactures interactive vehicle-to-grid EV charging stations (220 and 440 Volt options) that feature on-board billing with card swipe and the ability to manage surge pricing and power throttling in real-time during peak demand response events.

 

NeoCharge: NeoCharge is eliminating barriers to electric vehicle adoption and making it convenient to own an EV. Their first product is an inexpensive and intelligent 240-volt splitter that allows EV owners to use an existing 240-volt appliance outlet to fast charge their cars and save thousands of dollars in avoided charging station and electrician costs.

 

Paired Power: Paired Power develops and delivers innovative products that pair solar energy with EV charging, energy storage, and the grid. Their patented technology delivers 100% clean solar power directly into electric vehicles.

 

Nuvve: A vehicle-to-grid (V2G) software platform that enables any EV battery to generate, store and sell unused energy back to the electric grid in a bi-directional manner.


Technical Advisory Committee

The Technical Advisory Committee aids in the screening of entrepreneurs/technologies that are seeking support from the program. The committee is composed of diverse professionals from the private, public, and academic sectors who have domain expertise across the broad scope of technologies that span the evolving energy industry. In filling out this form, you may also indicate your interest in becoming a mentor for SCEIN startups. Mentors support Cleantech San Diego staff in ensuring smooth operation of the program by checking in with assigned companies on a monthly basis to assess how program service delivery is going, keep track of progress on critical business milestones, and offer tailored guidance to mentees

The Technical Advisory Committee includes domain experts from:

  • Arscientia
  • Baker Electric Home Energy
  • Better Energies
  • Black & Veatch
  • Calpine Energy Solutions
  • Caltech FLoW/Rocket Fund
  • Cisco
  • City of Carlsbad
  • City of Chula Vista
  • City of San Diego
  • DNV GL
  • EDF Renewable Energy
  • Enel Green Power North America
  • ENGIE
  • Ernst & Young
  • EvoNexus
  • Impala Ventures
  • Itron
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Mark IV Capital
  • Morrison & Foerster
  • Perkins Coie
  • Port of San Diego
  • Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch
  • Proteus Consulting
  • Qualcomm Technologies
  • S Curve Strategies
  • San Diego County Regional Airport Authority
  • SDG&E
  • Solar Turbines
  • Southern California Edison
  • Stoel Rives
  • Tech Coast Angels

Partner Organizations

Related Funding Programs

CalSEED and New Energy Nexus

The Southern California Energy Innovation Network is a partner in the CalSEED Initiative. Through the CalSEED Initiative, the New Energy Nexus will distribute $25 million in Series A and Series B grants and provide a robust suite of business development services—business planning, research teaming, fund development, and mentoring—for emerging entrepreneurs. Learn More

California Energy Commission Grants

The Southern California Energy Innovation Network is funded by the California Energy Commission. Sign up to receive future grant opportunity announcements from the Energy Commission. Learn More