DFT (Cleveland, USA) DFT is a cleantech company operating in the global power electronics industry. Cognicell™ is a software-defined embedded power management platform for battery-packs, fuel-cell systems, electric vehicles and distributed energy storage solutions enabling a new class of “Programmable Batteries.”

Next Step Challenge Spotlight Q&A:

Describe your startup and product as if you were describing it to a non-tech person on the street?
DFT makes a programmable battery for use in large variety of energy storage applications. Our first product is for use with solar powered DC microgrids. Future products will be for smartgrid connected, storage, wind turbines, electric vehicles, industrial equipment, consumer products, etc.

Describe how you got the idea to start your business?
Design Flux Technologies, LLC is a spin-out company from the University of Akron, and was co-founded by two Electrical Engineering students in 2011. Frustrated with the complexity and discontinuity in energy storage systems, these two students surrounded themselves with a team of experienced business advisors, engineering professors, and other colleagues to formulate a new paradigm in power management. The result of these efforts was the conceptualization of Cognicell: the first software-defined solution to the complex power management ecosystem.

How does your product/service works?
Cognicell™ is an embedded power management platform that manage and control cells for both higher safety, performance and reliability within a battery pack. The system is software-defined, or programmable through a real time operating system, thus also allowing application functionality, such as setting fixed or variable input/output voltages, solar charge converter, multilevel AC inverter, motor drive and controller, etc.  Therefore providing higher level of systems integration and reducing the balance of plant.

 Why did you apply for the Next Step Challenge program?
To seek assistance establishing and accelerating European operations as demanded by global OEMs.

Recent big news?
Attracting interest from a number of European venture capital firms with a cleantech focus area and entered into due diligence with a major venture fund in Denmark.

Who is the founder(s) of your team?
Tom Vo, CTO
Courtney Gras, COO

Current number of employees?
– US 7
– DK 2

 Which countries are you from?
– All members are US citizens
– CEO is dual US/DK citizen
– CTO is a first generation Vietnamese immigrant

 Year Founded: 2011

Website: www.designfluxtech.com

 Social Media:

– the company operate business to business in the power electronics, electric utility and automotive
–  industries thus do not sponsor widespread use of SoMe in order to manage online content
– the company upload videos and share links on YouTube for specific purposes
– individual members are encouraged to use LinkedIn for professional use only
– individual members may use SoMe but is personally responsible for content

DFT Fun fact:
– We don’t know what we don’t know but are determined to work as a team to find out!

Contact details:
– Kent Kristensen, Chairman/CE
– email: kkristensen@designfluxtech.com | phone: +1.440.338.6526 | skype: kkristensen2

 Optional, links to relevant press clippings: