Eco Innovator March 2012

Equity Capital

Cleantech Investment for OneVentures

The OneVentures Innovation Fund has made its first clean technology investment, supporting Brisbane-based Peak3 Pty Ltd to commercialize products and services for the management, treatment and monitoring of particulate emissions from diesel engines.

The investment was $1.5 million.

Diesel emissions include up to 41 toxic compounds that pose health risks to underground miners, yet existing solutions such as filters and catalytic convertors do not efficiently manage the smaller particulates, which are said to be among the most harmful.

There are strict emissions regulations being implemented globally and Peak3 aims to become the standard for end-to-end emissions management in the mining industry – providing equipment and services to monitor and agglomerate these small particles so they are captured by filters.

The technology has the potential to also manage diesel emissions above ground, such as for buses and other fleet vehicles, and to monitor and manage other air borne particulates such as dust.

OneVentures general partner Anne-Marie Birkill believes Peak3 technologies have the potential to deliver significant occupational health and safety, environmental and productivity benefits to the underground mining industry.

"The Peak3 team has developed solutions that meet a clear market need. This investment will enable the first commercial installations of their monitoring and management services and devices, and will support the scale up of the company's manufacturing and business development capability," she said.

The Peak3 Alternate Fuel system enables the controlled injection of secondary fuels such as LNG, CNG and LPG into large diesel systems.

Along with significant internal technical capability, Peak3 has long-standing research agreements with teams at CSIRO and the Queensland University of Technology.

Both the Queensland and Federal Governments have also provided considerable support to the development work done by Peak3 via grant funding.

The Peak3 technology was recently awarded a $866,284 Commercialisation Australia grant.

Peak3 chief executive Col Chandler said "Peak3 has already established itself as a leader in the management of mining emissions, and with One Ventures on board we are much better placed to meet the challenges of growth that this leadership brings."

Peak3 has developed Particulate Reduction Technology (PRT) and emissions monitoring software and processes which are said to be world leading.

Its Acoustic Filtration System uses ultrasonics to agglomerate particulates from as small as 30 nanometres in mining, industrial production facilities, transport and applications where particulate concentrations are a problem. The system was developed in collaboration with CSIRO, BHP Billiton Nickel West Leinster Nickel Operation and the Australian Coal Research Association Project, and verified by Queensland University of Technology.

The Peak3 Remote Emissions Monitoring Platform measures a range of emissions parameters on fixed and mobile systems. It uses multi-collinear processing to enable cost effective monitoring and reporting of emissions performance from mobile and remote locations.

The Peak3 Intelligent Secondary Fuel Integration system enables the controlled injection of secondary fuels such as LNG into large diesel systems. This helps increase the thermodynamic efficiency of diesel engines, enabling the reduction of a number of harmful emissions including particulates. The system is said to be robust and intelligent. It can be remotely configured and monitored, and can be customized to suit requirements.

OneVentures said it will work with Peak3 to finalize product development, complete first commercial trials and develop and exploit markets, initially in the mining industry.

OneVentures is a venture capital firm that invests in emerging Australian technology companies with breakout potential, differentiated technology and compelling business models in the clean technology, information technology and life sciences sectors.

OneVentures said that in the past year it has reviewed over 450 companies.

Ms Birkill told Eco Innovator she is particularly keen to find scaleable investments in bio agriculture and sustainable farming.





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