Business and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
|12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2021
|Accounting Policies [Abstract]
|Business and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
QS Energy, Inc. (“QS Energy”, “Company”) was incorporated on February 18, 1998, as a Nevada Corporation under the name Mandalay Capital Corporation. The Company changed its name to Save the World Air, Inc. on February 11, 1999. Effective August 11, 2015, the Company changed its name to QS Energy, Inc. The Company’s common stock is quoted under the symbol “QSEP” on the Over-the-Counter Bulletin Board (Pink Sheets). More information including the Company’s fact sheet, logos and media articles are available at our corporate website, www.qsenergy.com.
QS Energy develops and seeks to commercialize energy efficiency technologies that assist in meeting increasing global energy demands, improving the economics of oil transport, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The Company’s intellectual properties include a portfolio of domestic and international patents, a substantial portion of which have been developed in conjunction with and exclusively licensed from Temple University of Philadelphia, PA (“Temple”). QS Energy’s primary technology is called Applied Oil Technology (AOT), a commercial-grade crude oil pipeline transportation flow-assurance product. Engineered specifically to reduce pipeline pressure loss, increase pipeline flow rate and capacity, and reduce shippers’ reliance on diluents and drag reducing agents to meet pipeline maximum viscosity requirements, AOT is a 100% solid-state system that in a lab and other tests has shown to reduce crude oil viscosity by applying a high intensity electrical field to crude oil while in transit. AOT technology has shown to deliver reductions in crude oil viscosity and pipeline pressure loss as demonstrated in independent third-party tests performed by the U.S. Department of Energy, the PetroChina Pipeline R&D Center, and ATS RheoSystems, a division of CANNON™, at full-scale test facilities in the U.S. and China, and under commercial operating conditions on one of North America’s largest high-volume crude oil pipelines. The AOT product is still in development and testing and has transitioned from laboratory testing to initial demonstration and continued testing in advance of our goal of seeking commercial acceptance and adoption by the upstream and midstream pipeline marketplace. The Company continues to devote the bulk of efforts to the promotion, design, testing and the commercial manufacturing and test operations of crude oil pipeline products in the upstream and midstream energy sector. QS Energy’s efforts in the foregoing regard have been substantially hampered by a lack of capital. The Company should be able to continue its efforts to commercialize its AOT product during 2021 only if sufficient capital is raised to do so. The Company can provide no assurances in its ability to raise the capital needed to continue efforts in 2021, or that any such capital will be available to it on acceptable terms and conditions.
The accompanying consolidated financial statements have been prepared on a going concern basis, which contemplates the realization of assets and the settlement of liabilities and commitments in the normal course of business. As reflected in the accompanying consolidated financial statements, during the twelve-months ended December 31, 2021, the Company incurred a net loss of $1,420,000, used cash in operations of $722,000 and had a stockholders’ deficit of $4,173,000 as of December 31, 2021. In addition, as of December 31, 2021, twenty-eight notes payable with an aggregate balance of $1,333,000 and certain obligations to a former officer are past due. These factors raise substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern. The ability of the Company to continue as a going concern is dependent upon the Company’s ability to raise additional funds and implement its business plan. The financial statements do not include any adjustments that might be necessary if the Company is unable to continue as a going concern.
At December 31, 2021, the Company had cash on hand in the amount of $114,000. Management estimates that the current cash on hand will be sufficient to continue operations through September 2022, or, subject to actual costs incurred in implementing design modifications to our AOT demonstration project described. Management is currently seeking additional funds, primarily through the issuance of debt and equity securities for cash to operate our business, including without limitation the expenses it will incur in connection with the license agreements with Temple; costs associated with product development and commercialization of the AOT technologies; costs to manufacture and ship the products; costs to design and implement an effective system of internal controls and disclosure controls and procedures; costs of maintaining our status as a public company by filing periodic reports with the SEC and costs required to protect our intellectual property. In addition, as discussed below, the Company has substantial contractual commitments, including without limitation salaries to our executive officers pursuant to employment agreements, certain payments to a former officer and consulting fees, during the remainder of 2022 and beyond.
No assurance can be given that any future financing will be available or, if available, that it will be on terms that are satisfactory to the Company. Even if the Company is able to obtain additional financing, it may contain undue restrictions on our operations, in the case of debt financing or cause substantial dilution for our stockholders in case of equity financing.
During the year ended December 31, 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic did not have a material net impact on our operating results. The Company has not observed any impairments of its assets or a significant change in the fair value of its assets due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As of December 31, 2021, the Company has been following the recommendations of local health authorities to minimize exposure risk for its employees, including having employees work remotely and utilizing electronic submission of invoices and payments. At this time, it is not possible for the Company to predict the duration or magnitude of the adverse results of the outbreak and its effects on the Company’s business or results of operations, financial condition, or liquidity. The Company’s ability to continue operations is, in part, dependent on our access to funding. No assurances can be made that COVID-19 will not materially affect operations or negatively impact our ability to fund continued operations.
Principles of Consolidation
The consolidated financial statements include the accounts of QS Energy Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiaries, QS Energy Pool, Inc. and STWA Asia Pte. Limited. Intercompany transactions and balances have been eliminated in consolidation.
Use of Estimates
The preparation of financial statements in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of expenses during the reporting period. Significant estimates include those related to assumptions used in impairment analysis for property and equipment, assumption used in valuing the issuance of convertible notes and the corresponding debt discount, assumptions used in valuing equity instruments issued for services, and valuation allowance for deferred tax assets, among others. Actual results could differ from these estimates.
Under its business plan, the Company anticipates the leasing of its primary technology. The Company will recognize lease revenue ratably over the life of the lease upon commencement of the lease. Revenue on future product sales will be recognized in accordance with Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) 606, Revenue from Contracts with Customers. The underlying principle of ASC 606 is to recognize revenue to depict the transfer of goods or services to customers at the amount expected to be collected. ASC 606 creates a five-step model that requires entities to exercise judgment when considering the terms of contract(s), which includes (1) identifying the contract(s) or agreement(s) with a customer, (2) identifying our performance obligations in the contract or agreement, (3) determining the transaction price, (4) allocating the transaction price to the separate performance obligations, and (5) recognizing revenue as each performance obligation is satisfied. Under ASC 606, revenue is recognized when performance obligations under the terms of a contract are satisfied, which occurs for the Company upon shipment or delivery of products or services to our customers based on written sales terms, which is also when control is transferred. Revenue is measured as the amount of consideration we expect to receive in exchange for transferring the products or services to a customer.
Cash consists of cash and demand deposits with banks. The Company holds no cash equivalents as of December 31, 2021 and 2020, respectively. The Company maintains its cash with domestic financial institutions. At times, cash balances may exceed federally insured limits of $250,000 per depositor at each financial institution. The Company believes that no significant concentration of credit risk exists with respect to this cash balances because of its assessment of the creditworthiness and financial viability of the financial institutions.
Property and Equipment
Property and equipment are stated at cost less accumulated depreciation. Depreciation is computed using the straight-line method based on the estimated useful lives of the assets, generally ranging from three to ten years. Expenditures for major renewals and improvements that extend the useful lives of property and equipment are capitalized. Expenditures for repairs and maintenance are charged to expense as incurred. Leasehold improvements are amortized using the straight-line method over the shorter of the estimated useful life of the asset or the lease term.
Impairment of Long-lived Assets
Our long-lived assets, such as property and equipment, are reviewed for impairment at least annually, or when events and circumstances indicate that depreciable or amortizable long-lived assets might be impaired and the undiscounted cash flows estimated to be generated by those assets are less than the carrying amount of those assets. When specific assets are determined to be unrecoverable, the cost basis of the asset is reduced to reflect the current value.
We use various assumptions in determining the current fair value of these assets, including future expected cash flows and discount rates, as well as other fair value measures. Our impairment loss calculations require us to apply judgment in estimating future cash flows, including forecasting useful lives of the assets and selecting the discount rate that reflects the risk inherent in future cash flows.
If actual results are not consistent with our assumptions and judgments used in estimating future cash flows and asset fair values, we may be exposed to future impairment losses that could be material to our results. Based upon management’s annual review, no impairments were recorded for the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020.
The Company accounts for its leases in accordance with the guidance of FASB Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) 842, Leases. The Company determines whether a contract is, or contains, a lease at inception. Right-of-use assets represent the Company’s right to use an underlying asset during the lease term, and lease liabilities represent the Company’s obligation to make lease payments arising from the lease. Right-of-use assets and lease liabilities are recognized at lease commencement based upon the estimated present value of unpaid lease payments over the lease term. The Company uses its incremental borrowing rate based on the information available at lease commencement in determining the present value of unpaid lease payments (see Note 3).
The Company follows the asset and liability method of accounting for income taxes. The Company recognizes deferred tax assets and liabilities to reflect the estimated future tax effects, calculated at anticipated future tax rates, of future deductible or taxable amounts attributable to events that have been recognized on a cumulative basis in the financial statements. A valuation allowance related to a deferred tax asset is recorded when it is more likely than not that some portion of the deferred tax asset will not be realized.
Research and Development Costs
Research and development expenses relate primarily to the development, design, testing of preproduction prototypes and models, compensation, and consulting fees, and are expensed as incurred. Total research and development costs recorded during the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020, amounted to $350,000 and $355,000, respectively.
Patent costs consist of patent-related legal and filing fees. Due to the uncertainty associated with the successful development of our AOT product, all patent costs are expensed as incurred. During the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020, patent costs were $20,000 and $15,000, respectively, and were included as part of operating expenses in the accompanying consolidated statements of operations.
The Company periodically issues stock options and warrants to employees and non-employees in non-capital raising transactions for services and for financing costs. The Company accounts for stock-based payments to officers, directors, employees, and consultants by measuring the cost of services received in exchange for equity awards utilizing the grant date fair value of the awards, with the cost recognized as compensation expense on the straight-line basis in the Company’s financial statements over the vesting period of the awards. Recognition of compensation expense for non-employees is in the same period and manner as if the Company had paid cash for the services.
The fair value of the Company's stock options and warrants grant is estimated using the Black-Scholes Option Pricing model, which uses certain assumptions related to risk-free interest rates, expected volatility, expected life of the stock options or warrants, and future dividends. Compensation expense is recorded based upon the value derived from the Black-Scholes Option Pricing model and based on actual experience. The assumptions used in the Black-Scholes Option Pricing model could materially affect compensation expense recorded in future periods.
Fair Value of Financial Instruments
Accounting standards require certain assets and liabilities be reported at fair value in the financial statements and provide a framework for establishing that fair value. Fair value is defined as the price that would be received upon the sale of an asset or paid to transfer a liability in an orderly transaction between market participants at the measurement date. When determining fair value, the Company considers the principal or most advantageous market in which it transacts and considers assumptions that market participants would use when pricing the asset or liability. The framework for determining fair value is based on a hierarchy that prioritizes the inputs and valuation techniques used to measure fair value:
Level 1—Quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities.
Level 2—Inputs, other than the quoted prices in active markets, are observable either directly or indirectly.
Level 3—Unobservable inputs based on the Company's assumptions.
The Company is required to use observable market data if such data is available without undue cost and effort.
The carrying amounts for cash, accounts payable, accrued expenses and convertible notes payable approximate their fair value due to the short-term nature of such instruments.
Basic loss per share is computed by dividing net loss available to common stockholders by the weighted average number of common shares outstanding during the period. Diluted loss per share reflects the potential dilution, using the treasury stock method that could occur if securities or other contracts to issue common stock were exercised or converted into common stock or resulted in the issuance of common stock that then shared in the loss of the Company. In computing diluted loss per share, the treasury stock method assumes that outstanding options and warrants are exercised, and the proceeds are used to purchase common stock at the average market price during the period. Options and warrants may have a dilutive effect under the treasury stock method only when the average market price of the common stock during the period exceeds the exercise price of the options and warrants.
For the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020, the dilutive impact of outstanding stock options ofshares and shares; outstanding warrants of shares and shares; and notes convertible into approximately and shares of our common stock, respectively, have been excluded because their impact on the loss per share is anti-dilutive.
Recent Accounting Pronouncements
Recent accounting pronouncements issued by the FASB, including its Emerging Issues Task Force, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and the Securities and Exchange Commission did not or are not believed by management to have a material impact on the Company's present or future consolidated financial statement presentation or disclosures.
In August 2020, the FASB issued ASU 2020-06, Debt — Debt with Conversion and Other Options (Subtopic 470-20) and Derivatives and Hedging—Contracts in Entity’s Own Equity (Subtopic 815-40): Accounting for Convertible Instruments and Contracts in an Entity’s Own Equity (“ASU 2020-06). ASU 2020-06 simplifies the accounting for convertible debt by eliminating the beneficial conversion and cash conversion accounting models. Upon adoption of ASU 2020-06, convertible debt proceeds, unless issued with a substantial premium or an embedded conversion feature that is not clearly and closely related to the host contract, will no longer be allocated between debt and equity components. This modification will reduce the issue discount and result in less non-cash interest expense in financial statements. ASU 2020-06 also updates the earnings per share calculation and requires entities to assume share settlement when the convertible debt can be settled in cash or shares. ASU 2020-06 will be effective January 1, 2024, and a cumulative-effect adjustment to the opening balance of retained earnings is required upon adoption. Early adoption is permitted, but no earlier than January 1, 2021, including interim periods within that year. The adoption of ASU 2020-06 is not expected to have any impact on the Company’s consolidated financial statement presentation or disclosures subsequent to its adoption, with any effect being largely dependent on the composition and terms of outstanding financial instruments at the time of adoption.