UH tech bridge bound

Houston energy transition company announces move into new facility

At the UH Tech Bridge, Zenith aims to accelerate its research and development of novel gas and liquid filters, according to UH, to help reduce the cost of clean hydrogen. Photo by Natalie Harms

A Houston-area startup that is purifying water and chemicals with a innovative technology has announced its new office on the University of Houston's campus.

Missouri city-based Zenith Purification develops sorbents and polymeric membranes that can be used for carbon dioxide removal, hydrogen and natural gas purification, and water purification. According to the company, its processes are cost effective and offer a more efficient way to remove contaminants from water.

At the UH Tech Bridge, Zenith also aims to accelerate its research and development of novel gas and liquid filters, according to UH, to help reduce the cost of clean hydrogen.

“We are excited to embark on a new journey with the latest addition to our vibrant community, Zenith Purification LLC,” Darayle Canada, program director, startup development operations at UH Technology Bridge, said in a statement. “With their visionary team and cutting-edge technologies, they are poised to make a significant impact in the market. Their membership at the UH Technology Bridge will provide them with a supportive ecosystem, mentorship, resources, and networking opportunities to accelerate their growth.”

Zenith was founded in 2021 by Jian J. Zou in 2021. Zou has been granted three patents for his work in polymeric membrane synthesis and process development, which are the bases of the company. In July, Zenith was awarded its first research grant from the Department of Energy.

The UH Tech Bridge focuses on providing research and development space to UH-affiliated startups and entrepreneurs. The 15-building complex and its 31,000 square feet of incubator space houses more than 20 small companies and startups that provide internship and learning opportunities for UH students, along with several federally funded research centers and institutes.

In August the Tech Bridge announced that it would be partnering up with the UH Texas Gulf Coast Small Business Development Center to launch a new, collaborative program that will help innovators and entrepreneurs develop a pitch or commercialization plan. And in March it received a $2.875 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. to establish The Deck Innovation & Coworking Center.

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A View From HETI

A View From UH

This new Texas wind farm is now partly powering Target Corp. Photo via swiftcurrentenergy.com

A Texas wind energy project has officially delivered and is actively providing power to its customer, Target Corp.

Boston-based Swift Current Energy , which has an office in Houston, announced this week that its 197 MW Castle Gap Wind project is operational. It has the capacity to create enough pollution-free energy to power more than 50,000 homes annually.

"Castle Gap Wind is a momentous project for Swift Current Energy as we grow our projects under asset management and operations," Eric Lammers, CEO and co-founder of Swift Current Energy, says in a news release. "Castle Gap Wind is one of the earliest projects supported by the Inflation Reduction Act, and we are thankful for our partners at Target, Goldman Sachs, MUFG, CaixaBank and of course the entire Swift Current Energy team who helped make the Project possible."

Goldman Sachs provided the tax equity for the project, and Target and Swift Current have established long-term virtual power purchase agreement. Additionally, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, or MUFG, and CaixaBank provided project financing.

"Goldman Sachs is pleased to partner with Swift Current Energy on their Castle Gap Wind project," Ryan Newman, head of Tax Equity at Goldman Sachs, says in the release. "Goldman Sachs is committed to financing the energy transition and supporting sponsors like Swift Current that are developing sustainable infrastructure in an effort to combat climate change."

The project is located in the Mills and Lampasas Counties, which are around 90 miles northwest of Austin.

"This Castle Gap Wind contract is a part of our commitment to renewable energy and is one example of how we are leveraging our size and scale to benefit people, the planet and drive our business forward," Erin Tyler, Target's vice president of property management, says in the release.

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