ZincFive eyes global markets with purchase of NiZn battery maker


ZincFive, a US-based developer and manufacturer of battery management systems for nickel-zinc batteries, confirmed mid-November that it had bought NiZn battery maker PowerGenix in a move to commercialize the technology and scale up production.

Formerly trading as EnSite Power, the company was re-structured two years ago and under the new name ZincFive has bought PowerGenix to work on pushing the commercialization of the technology.

“Our primary purpose is to provide high performance solutions to global energy storage markets that desire high-power density, safety, long life and low environmental impact,” CEO and co-founder of ZincFive, Tim Hysell told BESB.

“The addition of PowerGenix has expanded our ability to leverage the 62 issued patents around NiZn and incorporate them into a licensing agreement with one of the largest global battery manufacturers in the world.

“Now the relationship culminates in a combined company, with the potential to deliver greater value to both customers and shareholders.”

Ensite Power developed its UPStealth digital battery management system with NiZn technology that provided UPS to traffic intersections when utility power went down.

It is now targeting other markets with its battery technology, including stop-start vehicle applications, for which, the firm says, “nickel-zinc is lighter, has a much longer life and delivers greater energy density than traditional lead-acid batteries.

“NiZn is more than capable of replacing lead-acid in the start-stop application due to the energy density, weight, tolerance to extreme temperatures, safety and performance life. ZincFive is working with multiple OEMs with which we are bound by confidentiality agreements,” said Hysell.

“We also see a future in other applications for starter motors, especially those where safety, lighter-weight, increased power density and longer life are valued.”

The company also manufactures a high power density battery back-up system for intelligent traffic systems that is deployed in more than 700 installations across North America, such as traffic lights and light rail crossings.

“ZincFive addresses a growing need in the battery market between lead-acid and lithium-ion capabilities,” says Tod Higinbotham, ZincFive’s president.

“New applications in our ever-evolving electrified and connected world are requiring much higher powered solutions, with increased cycling, lighter weight and significant safety and environmental improvements. Although it took a while for Edison’s idea to make it, the timing could not be better.”

The company claims that NiZn batteries are safe, non-explosive, deliver greater energy density at a lower cost than lithium or lead batteries, have a high charge and discharge capability with no trickle charge and the ability to withstand high temperatures.