Strategic Elements makes 400% improvement in ability to produce electricity from air moisture

Tue 06 Sep 22, 2:04pm (AEST)
A scientist working in a laboratory inspects a sample using a high-powered microscope
Source: iStock

Key Points

  • Alongside UNSW, Strategic Elements reports success in producing electricity from air to be used in physiological skin patches
  • Power generation from vapour pulled off using trademarked ‘Energy Ink’ cells
  • Early stage success adds confidence towards end-goal of producing a battery pack product capable of relying only on air moisture

Strategic Elements (ASX:SOR) is today reporting its success alongside research partners at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in generating electricity from moisture in the air using the company’s trademarks nanotech ‘Energy Ink’ cells.

The big takeaway: generation of electrical charge was over 400% greater in the latest round of tests compared to first-stage trials conducted back in January of 2022. 

Back in May, Strategic teamed up with UNSW to design a skin patch product that would be able to generate electricity from air, following through on a paper published in the journal Nature in 2020. 

Clearly, that partnership, which leverages UNSW’s nanomanufacturing capabilities, was the right move. As far as skin patches go, Strategic Elements is not targeting renewable energy applications for its air moisture tech, but rather the healthcare market.

USD $10B skin patch market 

Electronic Skin Patches, used in physiological testing in both health and sports science, reflect the key target market for the company.

Worth noting is that the company believes its most recent results point towards a superior profile for its Energy Ink cells over existing skin patch products. 

However, Strategic Elements also owns Stealth Technologies Pty Ltd, which is an automation and robotics company. Stealth Technologies will now get to work on assessing the use of Energy Ink tech in applications outside of the skin patch markets. 

Battery pack demonstrator 

The company is also developing its battery product, the asset which actually produces electricity from air and transfers to the skin patch.

A demonstrator model is expected for delivery before the end of the year. Stealth Technologies will enable this, with automated software to simulate generation specs in the context of various applications. 

What exactly those applications will be is not disclosed by the company today.

As for the company’s plans to give lithium-ion batteries a run for its money, it will be the battery packs that do it, and not the company’s primary skin patch strategy. 

Far from maximum potential: management 

“This achievement has unlocked a potential R&D pathway for developing larger systems through either increased cell size of multiple cells connected over a large area,” Strategic Elements MD Charles Murphy said. 

“This technology is still far from reaching its maximum potential as the team continues to develop the ability to harvest energy from moisture.”

ESG credentials underpin Energy Ink

Energy Ink cells, the company states, use green and sustainable materials which can be easily bent around structures, including the human body. 

The use of green materials does allow the company to step back from a dependence on mining operations, which Strategic Elements today highlights in contrasting its product against lithium-ion batteries. 

What green materials, exactly, comprise Energy Ink cells, is not immediately obvious. 

Regardless, the company’s technology will not be superseding lithium-ion batteries in any application anytime soon. 

Noted in today’s reports of success is one sombre observation: “[this] technology is still in early development, and fundamental upper limits of power output, duration and energy density remain unknown.”

Also unclear is if moisture generation has been distorted by the La Nina weather cycle and heavy rainfall across the east coast.

Strategic Elements' six month charts, showing the sharp spike in May which saw the share price rise 58%
Strategic Elements' six month charts, showing the sharp spike in May which saw the share price rise 58%


Written By

Jonathon Davidson

Finance Writer

Jonathon is a journalism graduate and avid market watcher with exposure to governance, NGO and mining environments. He was most recently hired as an oil and gas specialist for a trade publication.

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