Edited by Scott Morgan
#b#Climate , Cybersecurity At Princeton University#/b#
Princeton University’s Carbon Mitigation Initiative (CMI), a program designed to study climate change that was launched in 2000 with the financial backing of BP, will get $11 million from BP as part of an extension of the partnership.
In 2000 BP gave the CMI $19 million for a 10-year research agreement. In 2008 a five-year extension of the partnership was announced, but no dollar figure had been decided upon. The extended partnership will run through 2015.
According to BP, the CMI is designed to clarify scientific and policy issues associated with supplying the world’s increasing energy consumption as well as its need to lower carbon emissions. The research involves a combination of experimental and modeling investigations into such avenues as increasing ocean acidification and its effects on ocean life.
Also, the extension is expected to encourage a harder look at carbon dioxide capture and storage at coal-plus-biomass synthetic fuels plants. This is particularly important to the futures of the world’s two largest coal users, the United States and China.
The CMI program includes 16 faculty and more than 70 research staff and students at Princeton.
Cybersecurity. The university also has been designated one of seven collegiate hubs for cybersecurity research through 2015. The National Security Agency and the federal Department of Homeland Security first announced the intended designation last summer as part of the federal government’s bid to use engineering expertise to solve national security problems.
Princeton now is designated a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research, administered by the NSA and the DHS. The program allows Princeton faculty and students to apply to federal agencies for special fellowships, scholarships, internships, and research funding related to information assurance and the practice of protecting sensitive national security data.
#b#NRG’s Electric Fuel#/b#
NRG Energy, based at 211 Carnegie Center, has announced plans to build a network of 50 to 150 charging stations for electric cars in Houston, Texas. Throughout 2010 the firm has expanded its westward reach by acquiring alternative and renewable energy concerns in Texas and California and is using Houston as a testing ground. It is also in talks with automakers to develop a consumer package ranging from $49 to $79 a month that would provide access to the network (branded under the name eVgo) and a home charger unit.
CEO David Crane says the network is the first of its kind and is designed to make electric and hybrid cars more practical and affordable. Crane, an outspoken proponent of nuclear power, has written and spoken extensively on the need to end carbon emissions from power generation. His company, he says, produces more carbon than Norway, and the main reason is that carbon-spewing fuel sources (mainly coal) are far cheaper than cleaner alternatives. If the world’s energy emissions are to be cleaned, he says, clean-burning fuels need to be cheap and easy.
NRG’s plans call for 50 charging stations to be installed by mid-2011. Each charging station would deliver about three minutes of drive time for every minute of charging time, and the stations are meant to be failsafes for customers who did not charge up enough at home. Home chargers will cost $1,500 to $2,000 and customers will sign a three-year subscription agreement to be added to their regular electric bills.
The home chargers run at 220 volts, the same as a clothes dryer or electric oven.
Crane hopes to round up 1,000 subscribers by the end of next year and see the numbers increase as more electric cars roll off the assembly lines. But there are a few bugs to work out of the system — chiefly what to do about non-subscribers who want to hit the pumps. A second question mark is nighttime refueling. At the outset, NRG plans to operate the recharging stations during the day, since demand for fuel diminishes at night. But as more electric cars hit America’s roads, NRG would have to generate more power to meet the needs of night travelers.
If that becomes the case, NRG would consider a nuclear power solution, particularly since it is developing a nuclear plant in Texas.
NRG Energy Inc. (NRG), 211 Carnegie Center, Princeton 08540-6213; 609-524-4500; fax, 609-524-4501. David Crane, president and CEO. www.nrgenergy.com.
#b#Isles Becomes SBA Microlender#/b#
The U.S. Small Business Association has given $150,000 to Isles, a Trenton-based nonprofit that specializes in community development, to provide microloans to small businesses.
Businesses can apply for loans of up to $50,000, but Isles plans to offer amounts of $15,000 or less. According to Norma Diaz, Isles’ asset-building coordinator, the agency will finance start-ups, expansions, and green enterprises. For additional information on SBA microloans from Isles Community Enterprises, contact Diaz at 609-341-4791 or visit www.isles.org.
#b#New in Town#/b#
York Risk Services Group, 3 AAA Drive, Suite 201, Robbinsville 08691; 609-807-9400; fax, 609-689-0632. Lorraine Blacknik, branch manager. firstname.lastname@example.org.
York Risk Services Group, which provides insurance, risk management, pool administration, and claims management for businesses, has opened an office in Robbinsville. The company is headquartered in Parsippany, but has 37 offices in 13 states.
Tyco International (TYC), 9 Roszel Road, Princeton 08540; 609-720-4200. Edward Breen, CEO. www.tyco.com.
Tyco International, maker of the ADT security system and parent company to valve manufacturer Tyco Flow Control, has acquired the assets of Australia-based Supavac Pty Limited and Supavac Chile SA, a manufacturer of air driven slurry management systems, for an undisclosed sum.
Supavac develops vacuum loading solids pumps, unique air transfer concepts, and slurry dewatering systems that are used for a variety of applications in the oil and gas, industrial manufacturing, mining, water, and commercial construction industries.
Cardinal Partners, 230 Nassau Street, Princeton 08540; 609-924-6452; fax, 609-683-0174. John K. Clarke, managing general partner. www.cardinalpartners.com.
Cardinal Partners, which provides venture capital for the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, is part of a $16 million investment in Boston-based Verastem Inc., an early-stage biotech that aims to target cancer stem cells.
According to Verastem, cancer stem cells play an important role in the recurrence of cancer after treatment. Verastem is developing drugs to selectively kill cancer stem cells.
Workman & Skertic, 2642 Whitehorse-Hamilton Square Road, Hamilton 08619; 609-581-4682. Bob Workman, partner.
The accounting firm of Workman & Skertic has moved from 1200 Whitehorse-Mercerville Road to Whitehorse-Hamilton Square Road
Gennaro Costabile, president of Imagennaro’s Catering, 36 Union Street, to six months of home confinement for allegedly filing a false corporate income tax return. According to the IRS, Costabile claimed he had made more than $493,000 in 2006, but later admitted that an additional $161,808 was not included in the return.
Ronald Brenner, 77, on November 18. A longtime executive in the pharmaceutical industry, he served as president of McNeil Laboratories, CEO of Cytogen, and managing partner at Hillman Medical Ventures. He also was a vice president at Johnson & Johnson. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, November 27, at 10 a.m. at Titusville Methodist Church.
Larry West, 62, on November 18. A former prosecutor in Middlesex County, he also was a flight instructor at Raritan Valley Flying School
Orlando Olaya, 47, on November 17. He was co-owner, with his brother Hector, of Princeton Diamond Exchange in the Princeton North Shopping Center. Services will be held on Saturday, November 27, at 11 a.m. at Abiding Presence Lutheran Church in Ewing.
Helen Boehm, 89, on November 15. She was the co-founder, along with her husband, Edward, of Boehm Porcelain in Trenton.
Robert Carroll Jr., 81, on November 15. He was CEO of R.E. Carroll, an industrial repackaging materials company in Trenton.
Shoichi Yoshikawa, 76, on November 4. He was a senior research physicist at Princeton Plasma Physics Lab.
Thomas Williams, 72, on September 30. He was a computer information specialist at Princeton University for 42 years.