I recently became enamored with a female prodigy – and hero – who at the age of 17 dropped out of her PhD program to launch a company that would revolutionize the way we store energy. This company was the recent recipient of 37.3 million dollars from an investment fund lead by Bill Gates. Her name: Danielle Fong, Founder of LightSail, a company that solves the problems of compressed energy storage by combining air compression with water and creative thermodynamics. Sounds like a mouthful. It is trust me. I’ll attempt to break down the science behind her thesis later in the article. For now let’s tap into Ms. Fong’s philosophical insights on the definition of revolutionary ideas (taken from her blog Insights by Danielle Fong)

“There are two kinds of revolutionary ideas. The explosive, and the subversive.

The explosive ideas seem to spread like wildfire. What people miss is that wildfires need kindling. One might spark the spark that lights the fire, but the ideas are in nascent forms in other minds as well — the very minds that would popularize and manifest that idea were they just slightly further ahead. One person — a Rosa Parks of a revolutionary movement, might come to symbolize it. But this revolution was never theirs alone. Rosa Parks was a heroine of disobedience, but the movement would have been sparked by any of those who grew to so fervently support it. One can’t steal such a revolution. Instead, one simply becomes a part of it.

Subversive ideas are a different beast, and are perhaps more truly revolutionary. They are not of their time — they push too hard against the zeitgeist. It is these ideas that are truly original; they can offer tremendous, untapped advantages to those who can realize their products, but in their development they require great effort, intellectual rigor, and dedication.”

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About LightSail:

Ouote: Peter Thiel, Venture Capitalist, Founders Fund

“For far too long, the clean tech industry has been driven by politicians and ideologues who trade people’s taxes for dreams,” said Peter Thiel. “But hype is not a sustainable energy source. While authentic energy breakthroughs are needed to overcome geological constraints, fraudulent companies have driven out the good. It’s time to find honest companies that can develop technologies that stand on real innovation instead of the backs of taxpayers. LightSail is run by engineers, not salespeople, and it promises to be one of the first true alternative energy storage companies.”


One of the biggest drawbacks of clean energy is that it comes and goes with the weather. Wind and solar energy cannot be easily stored for peak usage, limiting how much clean energy companies can charge for the energy they harvest.

LightSail Info-graph: All Rights Reserved

LightSail Info-graph: All Rights Reserved

LightSail Solution:

LightSail solves the problems of compressed energy storage by combining air compression with water and creative thermodynamics. Tiny water droplets absorb and hold onto the heat created during compression. When the stored energy is needed, the same water droplets return the heat to the compressed air as it expands. As a result, about 70 percent of the stored energy can be delivered on demand. It’s much cheaper and you don’t need a mountain range, yet its efficiency is comparable to pumped hydro. Though the process is still in R&D, the company has managed to demonstrate a high-efficiency storage cycle at 100 kilowatt scale.

LightSail Patented Approach Info Grpah

LightSail Patented Approach Info Grpah

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KOLOR // Artificial Industrialist

KOLOR Looks Forward to Building With You!


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