A startup that is developing battery technology was the big winner at the Velocity Fund Finals at the University of Waterloo on Thursday.
Salient Energy won one of four $25,000 prizes as well as a $10,000 prize awarded to the top hardware startup in the competition.
Ten startups competed for prizes in the Velocity Fund Finals, which are held three times a year.
Salient, founded by student Ryan Brown, researchers Dipan Kundu and Brian Adams, and chemistry professor Linda Nazar, hopes to commercialize a new zinc-ion battery that could be charged when there is an excess supply of electricity and discharged in times of excess demand.
The company said the prize money will allow it to build an application scale prototype and secure partners for a prototype.
The win also gives Salient a spot in the Velocity Garage, the startup incubator located in the Tannery building in downtown Kitchener.
Three other companies won $25,000 prizes and a spot in the Velocity Garage:
•CubeXLab Technologies provides automated vision inspection solutions for parts and component manufacturers in automotive, fastener, plastic injection and pharmaceutical industries.
•Knote offers a natural language processing platform. Its artificial intelligence tools help companies automate routine, time consuming work, and improve efficiency.
•UpGrain uses low frequency electromagnetic field stimulation of seeds to increase crop yields by 20 per cent. It uses mathematical algorithms to calculate the most suitable time to maximize treatment effects on seeds.
Three other startups each won $5,000 in a separate competition featuring 10 teams of UW students:
•Gymnatik provides one-day passes to gyms around the world.
•MycoCup is a sustainable takeout cup made of agricultural waste and mycelium.
•The Playful Pixel hosts large group entertainment events that combine features of theatre, board games, and video games