When Bamdad Bahar was 14 years old, he travelled from London (UK), where he was going to school, to Tehran (Iran) where his family is from. He planned to spend the summer to work in his father’s cousin’s factory (Zagros Refrigeration) as an intern. His father had become close to his cousin (Moussa), who had visited the UK many times while his dad worked there.
During a dinner conversation, his father suggested that his son (who had a great deal of interest in engineering) should spend the summer in Iran working at one of the Zagros plants.
It was a fabulous summer. Bamdad worked on the window air conditioner production line. He learned how to weld copper and learned many Persian words along the way. As a young man Bamdad dreamt of one day returning to Iran and working for Zagros. Zagros had grown into the largest refrigeration and air conditioning appliance manufacturer in the region.
Bamdad finished high school and then Mechanical Engineering at the University of London. While studying for his degree Bamdad became very interested in alternative energy technology. He visited his dad's cousin in Toronto (Canada) in 1982., and attended the World Hydrogen Energy conference in Toronto while still an undergraduate. There he met Professor J. O’M Bockris and Karl Kordesh and his fascination with fuel cells led him to spending his final year project studying “Hydrogen Energy Systems”.
He then started a PhD program with Prof. Alfred Tseung (at City University) in Electrochemistry. He also visited with Francis Bacon at his home in Oxford, the inventor of the modern fuel cell. After not being able to get any financial support for his graduate studies, he left the UK and immigrated to the U.S. in 1986. In the U.S. he continued his pursuit of alternative energy technologies. He also attended Graduate School at Columbia University (studying Chemical Engineering).
He worked for a company (now Porex Technologies) developing porous media. After receiving an M.S. he began working for W.L. Gore and Associates (makers of Gore-tex membranes). At Gore, he founded their fuel cell components business. He also invented a new type of composite Ion Exchange membrane, which became the focus of a new enterprise there. This was an extremely successful venture. It grew from zero to $20 Million in revenues within 3 years.
He was then head hunted to run Teledyne Energy Systems in Baltimore. Teledyne manufactured Electrolyzers for hydrogen production. Interestingly, Bamdad had analyzed these units while completing his undergraduate final year project. Teledyne had also been a significant client of Porex Technologies. Bamdad had developed special porous housings for the Space Shuttle crystal growth experiments for Teledyne.
Bamdad took this slow, low growth unit for Teledyne from $6.1 Million in valuation in 1999 to a valuation of $114 million within 2 years. In 2001 the business was then merged with another energy related enterprise. At that point, he decided to start his own ventures. After many years of trial and error, Bamdad finally filed his first ECC patent in November 2009. Bamdad had always wanted to apply the concepts used in new age energy conversion technology to refrigeration. His boyhood dreams of working in his dad’s cousin’s refrigeration company was alive again.
Bamdad brings to Xergy a resume filled with successful business unit leadership that have cumulatively generated over $200 Million in profitable revenues in this area for the past 20 years. And he has also led innovation successfully with numerous new product commercialization. He has been an inventor or co-inventor in more than 50 patents in the field of membranes, porous media, ion exchange media and electrochemical applications.
Xergy won the GE-Ecomagination award in 2011. And was also a finalist in numerous Clean-tech awards globally. Xergy has also won both a phase 1 and phase 2 SBIR award from the U.S. Department of Energy. Xergy plans to commercialize its revolutionary electrochemical compression technology during this next phase. And change the world.
At Xergy, we believe that there is NO other technology that can make a bigger contribution to our environment than Xergy's ECC technology.
With the huge growth of the ‘global middle class’, there is almost an exponential increase in energy demand for refrigeration and air conditioner systems. Commercializing this technology is truly critical...and should make history!