Commercial Buildings, Mobility
February 6, 2024—For its 10th cohort, the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator (IN2) formed an all-demonstration group where each participant would scope and perform a demonstration of its technologies as part of the program.
The IN2 startups will complete their demonstrations over the next year or two, helping them in their goal to see their technologies gain market acceptance. Giving each startup a real-world opportunity for its technology backed up with technical assistance from National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) helps de-risk new customer acquisition by providing a concrete example of success.
The problem is time, according to NREL research engineer Omar Jose Guerra Fernandez.
CorePower produces components such as this advanced inductor to support the electric vehicle market and power grid. Photo from CorePower
“We don’t have time to wait for new technologies to be developed,” he said. “We cannot wait 20 years. We need to focus on the deployment of technologies that are almost ready today. That is my driving force for being involved in these types of projects. Deployment is a priority.”
Fernandez does techno-economic analysis for clean energy technologies where he quantifies the benefits and costs of new technologies. He joined an IN2 project when he was brought in to analyze CorePower Magnetics’ solid state transformer technology. The startup supports the electric vehicle (EV) market and power grid by designing, optimizing and manufacturing high-performance components such as motors, inductors, and transformers for use in various points of the system. The new technology CorePower is testing for EV applications has a lot of potential for urban areas with limited space, and in the future, it can play a role in markets for products that allow EV participation, which can be excellent for the grid and translate into benefits for consumers.