UA program gives entrepreneurs a home to develop businesses
By Patrick Rupinski Staff Writer
Published: Wednesday, April 13, 2011 at 3:30 a.m.
TUSCALOOSA | In a small office at the University of Alabama's AIME building, Tom Beyersdorff has spent the past year contacting North American companies, universities and researchers interested in ionic liquids made by his company, Iolitech Inc.
Ionic liquids are a liquid salt that have a growing number of applications in various industries. They have been used in products ranging from humidity sensors to batteries. And they have the potential of being used even more widely as the auto industry embraces electric battery-powered vehicles.
Ionic liquids can make batteries safer and higher-performing, Beyersdorff said of the future potential of Iolitech's product.
And if electric batteries someday replace gasoline engines in vehicles, Iolitech could be manufacturing ionic liquids in Alabama to serve the automotive industry.
That is one of the goals of AIME, or Alabama Innovation and Mentoring of Entrepreneurs. As UA's business incubator, it helps entrepreneurs develop their technology, products and business plans so budding companies can grow into viable businesses that AIME hopes will stay in Alabama.
editor's note: Iolitiech is a finalist in tomorrow's Alabama Launchpad Business Plan Competition finale in Mobile, Ala. Learn more here: http://www.alabamalaunchpad.com/2011-finale-info.html