How to Make a Better Lightbulb, Biofuel, or Energy Storage Technology: Xconomy Forum Adds Voices of Leading Entrepreneurs

3/10/09Follow @xconomy

Lots of creative entrepreneurs are popping up in the Northwest cleantech business, so we invited three of them to explain their ideas at our upcoming Xconomy Forum, The Rise of Cleantech in the Northwest, on March 26. These new special guests will offer up expertise in biofuels, energy storage, and conservation—some of the region’s key strengths we identified last week in our lists of alternative energy players here in Washington, Oregon, and British Columbia.

The forum will still feature the stimulating panel discussion that we announced previously with Michael Butler, Jeremy Jaech, Jesse Berst, Mark Aggar, and Linden Rhoads. The added trio of speakers will come immediately after the panel, introducing the audience to their business ideas in quick 2-minute bursts just before the networking portion of the evening. The new special guests are:

—Kirt Montague, CEO of Mercer Island-based Prometheus Energy. This company uses proprietary technology to take methane gas from municipal landfills, cow manure, and coalbeds, and turn it into liquid natural gas fuel.

—Chris Wheaton, chief operating officer of Seattle-based EnerG2. This University of Washington spinout company is developing novel materials to help increase the efficiency of storing energy from hydrogen and solar cells, and even to make “ultracapacitors.” Greg got the exclusive story for Xconomy in November when this company raised $8.5 million from OVP Venture Partners and Firelake Capital Management.

—David Grieger, CEO of Seattle-based Vu1. Grieger, the former chief marketing officer for Russell Investments in Tacoma, joined his current company in January. Vu1, pronounced like View One, aims to make a new type of light bulb that has the energy efficiency of a fluorescent bulb without containing mercury that can contaminate landfills.

The forum will start at 6:30 pm (doors open at 6 pm) on March 26, at the offices of K&L Gates at 925 Fourth Avenue, Suite 2900, in downtown Seatle. As a reminder, the discounted early-bird registration price of $95 expires this Thursday, March 12. We look forward to seeing many of the regular Xconomy readers there, as well as plenty of new faces.

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