• May 18th 2012 at 7:55AM
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Zenn Motor Company, the former purveyor of a neighborhood electric vehicle (NEV), and Eestor, the eternal purveyor of promises of a supercapacitor-based energy storage unit, have managed to defy at least one of the predictions hurled their way. The two intertwined companies have survived.

Despite the loss of its CEO a year ago, Zenn has been idling along, putting out mundane press releases about its financial maneuverings. Eestor, as is its custom, has remained mostly quiet. Until now. Both companies have issued announcements that are sure to excite the handful of people who still believe they will achieve the energy storage breakthrough that we first heard about in 2006.

Zenn's missive is mostly about a doubling sextupling down on its Eestor relationship, upping the ante to $30.5 million and receiving, in return, all rights to supply eventual energy-storing product regardless of territory or vehicle type.

For its part, the Eestor statement concerns technological developments. Apparently, the company has now successfully manufactured 20 micron-thick voidless squares of material capable of handling more than 3,500 volts that have "a dc resistance of greater than 700 terra ohms" (mmm... terra ohms... mmm). While this obviously sounds very impressive, the company warns that the aforementioned layers "do not yet achieve the level of permittivity necessary for commercial production." They are working on that though.

For all the pertinent details, you can check out both official press releases by scrolling down below.
Show full PR text

Toronto, Ontario – May 15, 2012 – ZENN Motor Company Inc. (TSXV: ZNN) ("ZENN" or the "Company") announced today that it has entered into a new technology agreement (the "New Technology Agreement") with EEStor, Inc. ("EEStor") which increases and improves the Company's exclusive rights to purchase electrical energy storage units ("EESUs") under development by EEStor.

James Kofman, Chairman and Interim Chief Executive Officer of ZENN commented, "The New Technology Agreement significantly expands ZENN's rights and improves upon the terms of the old agreement. Importantly ZENN now has exclusivity over an enormous potential market in automobiles and other vehicles and we are no longer limited by weight or category. The rights of ZENN are clearly defined and some of the uncertainties in the old agreement have been removed. The Company is now ideally positioned if EEStor is successful in developing its EESUs. We are mindful that EEStor has not yet achieved its targeted performance metrics for its EESUs, but feel the modest up front investment under the New Technology Agreement puts ZENN in a much stronger position to capitalize on the technology."

Under the New Technology Agreement, among other rights, ZENN has received the exclusive, worldwide right to purchase EESUs from EEStor for any vehicle, new or used, that uses electrical energy (excluding only one, two and three wheeled vehicles and those produced exclusively for the U.S. military or government) (a "Vehicle"). Under the old technology agreement ZENN had exclusive rights to vehicles with a curb weight up to 1,400 kilograms, net of the battery weight, but exclusions included pick-ups, trucks, SUVs, trams, buses and high performance sports cars. Under the New Technology Agreement there are no exclusions other than those described above.

In consideration for the new expanded technology rights awarded, ZENN is required to pay to EEStor US$500,000 within two business days of signing the New Technology Agreement. In addition the agreement provides for five staged payments tied to specific technical milestones aggregating US$1.2 million. Each milestone must be independently verified and meet specific performance metrics including those relating to energy storage. Once EEStor begins delivery of production quality EESUs ZENN is to pay US$3.8 million to EEStor and a further US$5 million on each anniversary of such payment for five years. Total payments under the New Technology Agreement are US$30.5 million (including the US$500,000 that was payable under the old agreement).

Importantly all payments after the initial payment are entirely at the discretion of ZENN. In the event that ZENN elects not to make any of the payments when due, its exclusive rights would revert to Vehicles with a curb weight of 1,400 kilograms or less, net of battery weight and its rights would be non-exclusive with respect to all other Vehicles. This would be an improvement over the rights under the old technology agreement.

The above is a summary only of the New Technology Agreement and is qualified in its entirety by the specific legal terms contained in that agreement.

As required under the New Technology Agreement, EEStor has issued a press release today providing an update on the current state of development of its EESU, the advancements it has made to date in developing its EESU and the challenges that still remain in the commercialization of its EESU. This is not the public disclosure of EEStor's technological development required in connection with the Company's recent equity investment in EEStor announced on March 26, 2012, which is required to be certified by an independent third party and has not yet been released, but a public update that was a condition of ZENN agreeing to enter into the New Technology Agreement. ZENN still expects EEStor to provide the disclosure contemplated in connection with the equity investment.
About ZENN Motor Company Inc.

The Company's goal is to be the provider of leading edge power storage solutions and related technologies to the automotive industry. Technologies and solutions, powered by EEStor's electrical energy storage units (EESU) have the potential to enable OEM and Tier 1 partners to deliver advanced electric transportation solutions to their customers.
Information contained in this release relating to EEStor, Inc. or the energy storage technology being developed by EEStor has not been reviewed by EEStor and EEStor does not assume any responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of such information.

For additional information please contact:
Vanessa Antoine
ZENN Motor Company Inc.
Tel. 416-535-8395 ext. 224
Natasha Vandesluis
Chief Financial Officer

ZENN Motor Company Inc.
Tel. 416-535-8395 ext. 220

Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

EEStor Provides a Progress Update on the Development of its Electrical Energy Storage Units

CEDAR PARK, Texas, May 15, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- EEStor Inc. ("EEStor") announced today that it is providing an update on the progress of its ultra-capacitor based energy storage technology.

EEStor has been working on the development of single layer Electrical Energy Storage Units (EESUs) as a step toward full commercial units. The single layers are generally around 20 microns in thickness with an area of 0.25 inches square. EEStor has successfully demonstrated a process that yields layers that can handle an operating voltage in excess of 3500 volts, have a dc resistance of greater than 700 terra ohms, and a dissipation factor of 0.005. The process of manufacturing the layers has evolved as EEStor has worked on improving the reliability of the layers. EEStor has recently focused its efforts on elimination of voids within the layers to improve the energy storage capabilities of the EESUs. EEStor has recently made major progress in that it is now successfully producing layers which tests indicate are void free.

The layers now being produced have very small internal self-discharge and crossover losses. These layers have been cycle tested by EEStor and have achieved over 1 million full cycles at a rate of less than 30 seconds per cycle. Each cycle consisted of charging to 3500 volts followed by discharging to zero volts. The EESU layers have better self-discharge characteristics and lower losses in the charge/discharge cycles than other known competitive energy storage technologies. Improvements have been made in the film morphology and fabrication requirements to facilitate the use of automated manufacturing. However, the most recently produced versions of the EESU layers have been tested by EEStor and in EEStor's opinion do not yet achieve the level of permittivity necessary for commercial production. EEStor is now working on improvements in the film morphology which it believes will allow it to significantly increase the permittivity and energy storage capabilities of the layers.

The performance of the EESU layers has not been independently tested. Once EEStor has improved the permittivity of the EESU layers, it will commence third party testing and certification. The third party results will lead to a detailed analysis of the technology's performance. Following independent certification of layers, EEStor intends to build multiple layer EESUs to demonstrate the effectiveness of the technology. EEStor has been developing production systems that have a level of automation and throughput capability that EEStor believes can be improved and scaled quickly.

About EEStor Inc.Headquartered in Cedar Park, Texas, EEStor Inc. is dedicated to the design, development, and manufacture of high-density energy storage devices. Utilizing revolutionary ultra-capacitor architecture and environmentally friendly materials, the EEStor technology will compete against existing battery technologies.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains "forward-looking statements," including statements related to making major progress, working on improvements which will allow EEStor to significantly increase the permittivity and energy storage capabilities of the layers, intending to build multiple layer EESUs to demonstrate the effectiveness of the technology and developing systems that have a level of automation and throughput capability that can be improved and scaled quickly. These statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including the risk of development or production delays, the risk that the technology or devices may not perform as expected, component or raw materials delays or shortages, the ability to effectively manage operating expenses and manufacturing operations and the ability to maintain or raise sufficient capital to fund current development and production goals. EEStor's actual results may differ materially from the expected results in this release. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date such statements are made. EEStor does not undertake any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements to reflect events, circumstances or new information after this press release, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 3 Years Ago
      It is so sad to see a company that started by having a purpose and delivering a real product, degenerate into a scam-like structure that does nothing but promising fictitious and ethereal "breakthroughs". After seeing the ZENN car on the roads, something deep inside me wants to believe in the company, I just can't convince my brain to do it.
      Ele Truk
      • 3 Years Ago
      In the story I counted EEStor misspelt 4 times. Capitalization is very important you know. Hmm, if the letters are in the correct order, then isn't it actually spelled correctly? OK, I redact my statement. In the story I counted EEStor miscapitalized 4 times.
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 3 Years Ago
      Aw junk, here comes the EV Snake oil... er.. snake electrolyte?
      • 3 Years Ago
      NanoCarbons a successful businessman, capacitor expert, and lawyer comments on EESTOR's May 15, 2012 press release: http://conceredabouteestorlies.blogspot.com/2012/05/nanocarbons-comment-on-eestors-may-15.html
      • 3 Years Ago
      They should probably get some kind of award for the longest running public scam that most people who think about it, know is a scam. If you remember the original 2006 claims, they were going to ship power units for cars in 2007. :D That sad thing is, that I bet none of these bozos will ever do time. Throw out some pseudo-science into the mix and a scientifically illiterate public can't see the scam. After bilking millions they will just claim there were insurmountable difficulties commercializing.
        • 3 Years Ago
        There are MUCH older scams out there that are still around even though most people know they are scams. Overunity machines like Bedini Motors, Searl, etc. Cold Fusion still has advocates that make claims. Water4gas, HHO injection, Stanley Meyers, etc... they are all over the place still.. and as gas prices rise this summer, they will surge again.... (okay, maybe most people don't know that it's a scam yet since many people who try "feel" like they get better mpg through the placebo effect on their drive habits).
      Smith Jim
      • 3 Years Ago
      There is a documentary called "Gas Hole" that talks about the 200 MPG carburetor that has been suppressed by oil companies. They interviewed some guy who knew a guy who's third cousin's best friend's uncle's neighbor invented this carburetor and this guy WAS KILLED over this carburetor. In the same film, it was revealed that Shell Oil is suppressing a 1000 MPG carburetor. It's a documentary, so it must be true.
        Dave D
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Smith Jim
        Well, if they made a documentary, then I for one believe it! What more proof do you need!!!!
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Smith Jim
        Thanks 2WM... but whenever somebody makes claim for an "add-on" device to increase MPG... makes sure it follows some standard unspoken assumptions. To be put on a... 4 seat passenger vehicle Meeting current safety standards by the NHTSA Weighing greater than 2500 lbs with a Cd of greater than .25 and MPG rated on a 5 cycle EPA test ------------- There are still some water4gas scammers around claiming some ridiculous numbers. But every time I ask one of them to let me put in on a dyno to run the EPA tests... they decline.
        2 Wheeled Menace
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Smith Jim
        You can still get 200mpg carbeurators, plenty for sale out there! check out some mopeds! :D
      • 3 Years Ago
      Sorry, I have now invested all the families profits from the South Sea Bubble into Rossi's cold fusion. One scam at a time please!
        • 3 Years Ago
        There are some Greeks on the phone that would like to talk to you about government bonds...
          • 3 Years Ago
          I'm a German bank with unlimited funds "too big to fail", and I will buy all the Greek bonds you have.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I wish those two would go away because they give the EV biz a bad image. It would be nice if we had an EV company that promised something and then over-delivered. Much maligned Coda deserves some credit for selling their car at a price lower than initially projected. Tesla deserves some credit for shipping some Model S cars early (if the actually pulled it off).
        • 3 Years Ago
        "Tesla deserves *some* credit" Now come on, don't be so stingy...
      • 3 Years Ago
      I really don't think there is any more room left for EV car startups to jump into the market at this late stage. I recently spotted a white Zap Zebra 3-wheeler 4-door in the wild driving around Denver Tech Center, followed by a black Volt less than a minute later. The profound difference between the two was very striking. It was like 5 decades had passed, not less than a minute. I just can't see that Zenn or Zap or Aptera can pull off what Tesla has done, or even get close to what Fisker is trying to do. There might have been a place in the market for small car makers like this back in 2006, but ever since the Leaf and the Volt hit the market, the bar is much higher.
      • 3 Years Ago
      There is nothing that "sounds very impressive" in EESTOR's press release. The EESTOR FRAUD, and Zenn pump and dump continues: http://conceredabouteestorlies.blogspot.com/2012/05/nanocarbons-comment-on-eestors-may-15.html
      Shecky Vegas
      • 3 Years Ago
      I hear they're privately funded by a rich Nigerian diplomat, who is currenly at odds with his government. But he's willing to give YOU a million dollars, tax free, for just helping him out. Now, if you can just forward your Social Security Number and Bank account info, he'll send you....
      • 3 Years Ago
      Poor Zenn. They made a nice little NEV and then they were suckered into investing in EEstor. Now that they've bet their house they are stuck dropping more money into the EEstor black hole.
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