Troy Helming, the CEO and Founder of EarthGrid, has a long history of success when it comes to clean energy ventures. A two-time unicorn founder, he headed two of the most successful renewable energy companies in the U.S.: wind developer Tradewind Energy and Pristine Sun, a leading developer of community utility-scale solar farms. Now, Troy is working on his latest endeavor – plasma-wielding, tunnel-boring robots.
In this episode, Troy discusses how EarthGrid’s technology could help create sustainable, resilient, and cost-effective energy infrastructure worldwide:
- EarthGrid’s plasma technology promises to dig tunnels at a faster pace and a fraction of the cost of traditional mechanical methods. Troy likens the company’s robot to a small tractor armed with “lightsabers,” used for vaporizing rock and soil. A Mandalorian-like jetpack then ejects the debris.
- EarthGrid’s plasma boring technology is more environmentally friendly than other options, as it does not require the use of chemicals or drilling mud. Since it is a non-contact method of tunneling, it also does not disturb the surrounding environment or communities.
- At scale, EarthGrid’s technology could significantly reduce the footprint of energy infrastructure by eliminating the necessity for above-ground power lines and reducing the energy required to transport resources. Beyond power lines, the tunnel boring tech can also be used for a range of other infrastructure projects, including underground transportation systems, water pipelines, and secure underground data centers.
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