The Elements of Innovation Discovered

RESOLVE to develop First Tellurium tech

Metal Tech News - May 31, 2024

Solution-focused NGO agrees to help manufacture and sell tellurium-based thermoelectric generator with green potential.

Amongst the rarest of stable elements on the periodic table, tellurium has quietly emerged as a secret ingredient of the clean energy future. This includes serving as a semiconductor in thermoelectric generators – solid-state devices that transform waste heat from vehicle engines and industrial processes into clean electricity.

This promising green energy technology has attracted the attention of Washington, DC-based RESOLVE Inc., a solution-focused global non-governmental organization that bridges the gap between people and the planet.

Under a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with First Tellurium Corp., RESOLVE plans to secure up to US$29 million (CDN$39.5 million) to fund a three-phase strategy for manufacturing, marketing, and selling PyroDelta's tellurium-based thermoelectric generators.

"RESOLVE's mission is to forge sustainable solutions to critical social, health, and environmental challenges by creating innovative partnerships," said First Tellurium President and CEO Tyrone Docherty. "This new venture aligns perfectly with that mission."

Launching PyroDelta thermoelectric device

About a year ago, First Tellurium announced that it was creating a new company to advance research and development of a tellurium-based thermoelectric generator with applications for improving the efficiency of EVs, solar power generation, and internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. That company, now known as PyroDelta Energy Corp., developed its first prototype last October.

"The generator, in its initial testing and development, has demonstrated potentially significant improvements in the conversion of heat to energy," Docherty said at the time.

By March of this year, PyroDelta had demonstrated that its tellurium-based generator could withstand temperature extremes far wider than traditional thermoelectric devices, including as high as 1,800 degrees Celsius (3,270 Fahrenheit).

At the time, the company suggested its devices could be an ideal replacement for both the radiator and alternator in ICE vehicles.

"A primary market for us currently is in automotive applications as a thermoelectric radiator, generating electricity from the heat differential of the hot liquid going through the thermoelectric pipe while air cools it from the outside," said Docherty.

The electricity generated by the pipe radiator would power all of an automobile's electrical devices, which could make the alternators traditionally delivering electricity to ICE engines obsolete.

Eliminating the alternator, which is driven by the engine, is expected to result in significant fuel savings. There is the potential that if this device generated enough electricity from engine heat, it could also charge batteries for more efficient hybrid vehicles.

PyroDelta is presently building a thermoelectric radiator with a 1-kilowatt capacity for vehicle retrofit.

PyroDelta Energy Corp.

RESOLVE to develop PyroDelta device

Seeing the potential of tellurium-based thermoelectric generators, RESOLVE has agreed to secure funding for manufacturing and marketing, as well as acquiring high-purity tellurium, antimony, and other critical metals for PyroDelta's device.

Under the MOU announced on May 30, RESOLVE will provide governance, administrative, and fundraising support through RESOLVE Enterprises, the organization's incubator for start-up social enterprises, and Regeneration Inc., which extracts minerals critical for the energy transition and the circular economy from legacy mines then restores the landscape.

Regeneration is backed by Rio Tinto, Apple, Tiffany & Co., Caterpillar, and other partners.

Several Regeneration projects are expected to produce tellurium from copper tailings or as a byproduct, which would be used to manufacture the PyroDelta device. Additional critical metals would be obtained on the open market.

"This is a huge step forward for us in developing new tellurium-based technologies," said Docherty. "RESOLVE is a highly respected NGO, and they provide us with an established and powerful network of relevant policy, political and funding connections, including the U.S. government, world-leading mining companies, and green investors, to help realize the potential of the PyroDelta device."

The three-year manufacturing, marketing, and sales strategy for the PyroDelta device will begin with a roughly US$1 million (C$1.4 million) launch phase that is expected to span the next 18 months. This is expected to be followed by a US$3 million (C$4.1 million) second phase and up to US$25 million (C$32.7 million) final phase.

"RESOLVE and its associated partners have the skills, knowledge and networks we've been looking for," said Docherty. "We will essentially be silent partners, letting RESOLVE do what they do best while we develop our own mineral projects."

The company's exploration stage mineral projects include the tellurium-enriched Deer Horn and Klondike projects in British Columbia and Colorado, respectively.

Author Bio

Shane Lasley, Metal Tech News

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With more than 16 years of covering mining, Shane is renowned for his insights and and in-depth analysis of mining, mineral exploration and technology metals.


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