Mechanical Technology, Inc. (MTI) was founded in 1961 as a developer and manufacturer of energy efficient rotating machinery and instrumentation.  Led by Harry Apkarian and Beno Sternlicht, two former General Electric engineers, the company quickly established itself as a leader in innovative technology. By the late 60s, there were 200 ongoing R&D programs at MTI.  In the five decades that followed, the company would be known worldwide for its line of high-efficiency energy-conserving turbines; advanced co-generation, power and heat systems; the revolutionary Stirling Cycle engine; pioneering energy conversion machinery, balancing systems and breakthroughs in fuel cell technology.Today, (MTI) is engaged in the design, manufacture, and sale of test and measurement instruments and systems through its subsidiary MTI Instruments Inc. MTI Instrument’s products use a comprehensive array of technologies to solve complex problems in numerous industries, including manufacturing, electronics, semiconductor, solar, aviation, automotive and data storage.

MTI Historical Events

1961October, 1961

The Start…

Harry Apkarian and Beno Sternlicht, two former GE Engineers, open the doors of Mechanical Technology Inc.



The Instruments Division (now MTI Instruments Inc.) is formed.


Early Investors

The Ford Motor Co. purchases 10% of MTI’s stock and a New York investment firm handles a $2 million private placement of MTI stock.


MTI Goes Public

MTI becomes a publicly held company


Ford Partnership

In the largest technology development program in its history, MTI partners with Ford on a $100 million project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy to install a Sterling Cycle Engine in an American-made automobile and achieve a 30% improvement in fuel efficiency.


Ling Electronics Acuisition

MTI acquires Ling Electronics, a manufacturer of vibration test equipment.


United Telecontrol Electronics Acuisition

MTI acquires United Telecontrol Electronics, a New Jersey defense contractor.


ProQuip Acquisition

MTI acquires ProQuip, a California designer and manufacturer of automatic test equipment for rigid computer disks.


Plug Power Formed

MTI and a subsidiary of DTE Energy Co. form Plug Power LLC., a joint venture to further develop the company’s Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell technology.


Satcon Alliance

MTI forms a strategic alliance with alternate energy company SatCon Technology Corp.


MTI acquires holdings in Beacon Power Corp.

MTI acquires holdings in Beacon Power Corp., whose flywheel energy storage systems are designed to manage power quality and prevent power interruptions.


MTI Micro introduces Mobion Technology

Subsidiary MTI Micro introduces breakthrough Mobion Technology, demonstrating the first handheld entertainment system and PDA/smartphone powered by an integrated micro fuel cell.