APYRON TECHNOLOGIES RECEIVES RECOGNITION FROM DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY FOR INNOVATION IN RESEARCH
Company Awarded with Grant for Progressive Catalyst Development Program
ATLANTA - August 22, 2001 - Apyron Technologies Inc., a leading developer of advanced materials, today announced it received a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) award from the Department of Energy (DOE).
The SBIR program awarded Apyron with a grant to develop an improved catalyst for the production of methanol. Methanol has traditionally been used as a building block for many chemicals, but more recently as an energy source for many applications, including fuel cells.
The DOE awarded Apyron with a Phase I grant. Six months after project initiation, Apyron will be eligible for a Phase II grant, which will be used to help the company commercialize its technology. In total, the work performed with the DOE grants could be worth $1 million.
"We are thrilled that the DOE has recognized Apyron as a leading innovator in the energy industry," says Rom Papadopoulos, chairman of the board of directors and CEO of Apyron. "This grant validates our progressive technology, which continues to yield new products and solutions that will lead to improved fuel efficiency and higher performance materials worldwide."
The DOE created the SBIR award program in 1982 in order to obtain high quality scientific and technological research from innovative businesses across the United States. Since 1982, the program has awarded more than $10 billion to technology companies in various industry sectors.
Advancing Fuel Cell Research and Development
One reason Apyron's work in developing an improved catalyst for methanol production is significant is that methanol is a fuel source for several types of fuel cells. Fuel cells are battery-like devices acknowledged for their energy generation and emission reduction potential in powering the automobiles, homes, factories and appliances of the future.
Apyron's patented Advanced Material Synthesis Technology (AMST) is a pioneering methodology for the conversion of commodity compounds into custom-designed materials. AMST allows Apyron to better control physical and chemical properties, thereby yielding catalysts with superior performance characteristics.
The unique qualities of the AMST technology platform will enable Apyron's research team to develop a specialized catalyst that will convert carbon monoxide into methanol at a much lower temperature than required with existing commercial catalysts. Ultimately, Apyron's technology will enable companies to produce methanol with less energy and at a lower cost.
In addition to the research funded by the DOE grant, Apyron also works with researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Together, Apyron and the research team at Georgia Tech are conducting research to develop improved catalysts for the synthesis of hydrogen, considered by the DOE as the fuel of the 21st century. Hydrogen is also an energy source for use in fuel cells for mobile applications, like automobiles.
Fuel cell technology can be applied to power everything from laptop computers and appliances to homes, automobiles and power plants. Recent studies have predicted that global demand for transportation fuel cells will reach $9 billion by 2007. Apyron is working to develop technology that will make fuel cells more efficient and cost-effective.
Apyron and the Big Picture Ð Cost and Energy Savings for the Chemical Industry
Chemicals are the leading U.S. export, exceeding grains and other agricultural goods. The industry produces more than 7000 products worth more than $375 billion each year.
One DOE report states that approximately 90% of all chemical manufacturing processes and more than 20% of all industrial products in the U.S. require catalysis. In fact, catalysis plays a major role in the production of 30 of the top 50 U.S. commodity chemicals, and six of the remaining 20 are made from raw materials that are produced catalytically.
Chemical reactions require a great deal of energy, and therefore, they incur a great deal of cost for the businesses that need them to create their products. Apyron aims to develop improved catalysts that require less energy for reaction and produce higher-quality materials with reduced levels of wasteful and environmentally harmful byproducts. The company's proposal to develop an improved catalyst for methanol production is just the tip of the iceberg. Apyron's AMST technology can be applied to catalysts used to manufacture a variety of products, including pharmaceuticals, fuels and specialty chemicals.
About Apyron Technologies
Apyron develops and markets advanced materials that improve the quality of life globally. Applications for Apyron's proprietary technologies include air and water purification, transportation, energy, pharmaceuticals, health care, food, beverages and agriculture. Founded in 1994, the Atlanta-based private company has more than 50 employees, including internationally respected chemists and scientists that manage projects in multiple countries. Apyron plans to become a publicly owned company within 9-12 months.
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