Maxwell Technologies Blog
Ultracapacitors: The Agents of Change

Ultracapacitors: The Agents of Change

| Michael Everett, CTO and Vice President, Research

There are precious few times when a new technology can produce such broad and deep change, but we have one here. Ultracapacitors can be the catalyst for the change we need to see in a world that faces a deepening energy crisis. Humans and the environment alike must see the change impacts now, not later, and not in any small way. And ultracapacitors can bring about that change at the rate required.

In the way ultracapacitors operate, in the applications they enable, in the markets they serve, in the impacts they have on how energy is managed, and in the positive influences on the environment—ultracapacitors participate in, implement and drive change.

Wind farm owners and operators, truck drivers, fleet managers, and a multitude of other professionals in industries around the globe recognize the need for change and the opportunities that ultracapacitors represent. They can see a future in which this important technology plays a key role. When individuals recognize not only the need for change, but the solutions that are enabled by ultracapacitor technology, that’s when we will begin to make great strides with the application of this technology.

The ultracapacitor finds its utility and its ultimate value in bringing about change. I contend that it is when things are changing that the highest value is created. Without the appropriate agent for change, the continuous driving need for constant change will render a static system ineffective or even worse, incapable of performing its intended function. Take the example of a wind turbine and blade pitch control.

If the wind turbine is unable to generate rotational motion due to the blades of the turbine being maladjusted for the direction and speed of the prevailing wind, the turbine is valueless; it’s very expensive, but has no value. However, if the pitch of that turbine blade is appropriately adjusted via a burst of power, suddenly the turbine starts turning and begins to perform its intended function of generating electricity. I would maintain that the burst of power is the critical need, the critical change agent that brings value to the wind turbine. We must proliferate the true agents of change, the ultracapacitors, into the energy infrastructure, to bring the highest value change solutions to the critical problems we are tackling.

Ultracapacitors will enable the monumental changes the world needs. The industry and the energy storage markets need to act together with speed and purpose. We need to advance the technology, drive the applications and bring about the changes that will make a difference in the way the world runs on energy. This is necessary not only to survive the energy crisis our world faces, but to flourish in spite of it. I am proud and excited to be part of such a movement that has such great ability to influence the future.

Mike EverettMike Everett
CTO and Vice President, Research
About this author

Mike Everett joined Maxwell in August 2002, assuming responsibility for technology systems, including product assurance and multiple systems engineering groups. In December 2005, he was appointed chief technical officer. Before joining Maxwell, he spent seven years overseeing product development for 3D Systems Inc., a California-based technology company that designs and manufactures three-dimensional imaging systems. Over a 16-year engineering career, Mike has been responsible for all levels of new product development, primarily focused on systems engineering.




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