World Materials Forum
Newsletter 41

Dear all,

No surprise as Critical metals are drawing further attention: An in-depth look at venture funding in EV battery startups over the past few years (Crunchbase), two analyses of investments in key battery component supply chains ( and Bloomberg), and reports on the challenges and opportunities ahead for critical EV materials (EnergyPost.euand NTNU). Finally, an article showing how graphene could become a promising substitute for rare metals in cell phones (Queen Mary University of London).

On the scientific front we highlight cutting-edge technologies such as Stanford University's ultrathin solar panel, two new energy storage systems at Berkeley Lab and at Tianjin University, a new sodium metal anode by UT Austin, sustainable sodium-potassium batteries by the University of Bristol, annealing process for all-solid state battery by Tokyo Tech and finally, the demonstration of 99 percent accuracy for quantum computing by the University of New South Wales.

And we selected 6 sustainability initiatives : a new technology harvesting water from the air without any energy input (ETH Zurich), a promising machine to sort out plastic waste more accurately (Aarhus University), a way to save tremendous amounts of water in the semiconductor industry (IEEE Spectrum), an impressive "water battery" energy storage project in Kentucky (CleanTechnica), Panasonic ready to use recycled copper foil from Redwood (Clean Technica) and also a good review on batteries regulations: do we need to be complex to get greener? (Nature Materials)

Also 17 of our WMF Start Up Alumni were in the news since the start of 2022. Impressive funding rounds (EH Group - Switzerland, Lixo - France, NAWATechnologies - France, Zeta Energy - USA) as well as good press coverage (Ajelis - France, Applied Nanolayers - Netherlands, Blackleaf - France, Carbios - France, Citrine Informatics - USA, Nitricity - USA, UBQ Materials - Israel, Vaporsens - USA, Vartega - USA, Woodoo - France), some interviews (Ajelis - France, BComp - Switzerland, Inopsys - Netherlands, UBQ Materials - Israel) and two award winners (EH Group - Switzerland, Safi Organics - Kenya).

Finally some greetings to Ajelis (France), Genes'Ink (France), Vaporsens (USA) and Woodoo (France) who were all presenting their innovations at the CES in Las Vegas early January

As always, we hope that you enjoy the reading.

The WMF Editorial Team.
Victoire de Margerie, Valentin Desbuis & Sélène Ciancioni

Fitches report on cobalt perspectives industry to get a big boost from the shift to a green economy

Queen Mary University of London, January 6th:
Graphene could replace rare metal used in mobile phone screens, January 10th:
Critical Raw Materials for the transition: Europe must start mining again

Bloomberg, January 18th:
EV battery makers are pushing up demand for all inputs, even graphite

NTNU, January 20th:
Demand for rare minerals and metals create eco-dilemma

Crunchbase, February 3rd:
Venture funding for EV battery-related technology is booming


Stanford University, December 14th:
New materials could deliver ultrathin solar panel

Materials Today, December 2021:
Compact Energy Storage Enabled by Graphenes

SciTechDaily, December 31rd:
Turning up the heat: thermal energy storage could help decarbonize buildings

Materials Today, January 3rd:
New sodium Metal anode at UT Austin

University of Bristol, January 6th:
New sodium potassium batteries

Tokyo Tech, January 11th:
Scientists reduce all-solid-state battery resistance by heating it

University of New South Wales, January 20th:
Quantum computing in silicon hits 99 percent accuracy


Brighter Side of News, December 23rd:
New technology harvests water from the air, 24 hours a day, with no input energy

Aarhus University, January 6th:
Breakthrough in separating plastic waste: Machines can distinguish 12 different types of plastic

CleanTechnica, January 6th:
Partnerships paving the way for circular supply chain for batteries

CleanTechnica, January 10th:
Kentucky coal mine will become giant "Water Battery" energy storage project

IEEE Spectrum, January 25th:
Water scarcity concerns drive semiconductor industry to adopt new technologies

Nature Materials, February 2nd:
Regulations for batteries: is it necessary to be complex to get greener?


Ajelis (N 2018), January 4th:
Ajelis's depoluting fibers (FR)

Ajelis (N 2018), December 27th:
Ajelis CEO's profile by the Académie des Technologies (FR)

Applied Nanolayers (N 2020), February 3rd:
Increased demand for wafer sized graphene sheets used to manufacture next generation devices

Bcomp (N 2018), December 15th:
Special Edition on The Motoring Podcast - Bcomp Natural Fibres Composite Materials

Blackleaf (N 2021), January 21st:
Blackleaf highlighted in L'Usine Nouvelle for its graphene made in water (FR)

Carbios (N 2017 - Grand Prix Scale Up 2021), January 19th: Carbios Accelerates Its Industrial Development

Citrine Informatics (Grand Prix 2017), January 14th:
Citrine Informatics Closes Record 2021 and Reports 8.3X Growth in Total Contract Value

EH Group (Coup de Coeur Award 2020), January 5th:
EH Group received the Excellent Product Award at the 2021 China Hi-Tech Fair

EH Group (Coup de Coeur Award 2020), January 13th:
EH Group Secures €4.7M to Advance Its Zero-Emission Fuel Cell Technology

Inopsys NV (N 2021), January 26th:
CEO of Inopsys interviewed on waste water treatment

Lixo (N 2021), January 21th:
Lixo raises €3.5 M to characterize and track waste in real time

NAWA Technologies (N 2019), January 22nd:
NAWA Technologies completes €18.3 M series C funding

Nitricity (Grand Prix 2021), January 19th:
Nitricity pulling fertilizer from thin air with plasma process powered by photo voltaic

Safi Organics (N 2019), January 16th:
Safi Organics - Finalist of Zayed Sustainability Prize 2022 in 'FOOD' category

UBQ Materials (N 2021), January 24th:
How UBQ Uses Household Garbage To Curb Methane Emissions

UBQ Materials (N 2021), January 24th:
Co-Founder and Co-CEO discusses UBQ Materials' $170M funding round and shares plans for global expansion on CNN

Vaporsens (N 2017), January 6th:
Vaporsens technology to detect explosives for your next car

Vartega (N 2020), January 13th:
Vartega on Carbon Fiber Recycling

Woodoo (N 2017), January 10th:
Woodoo is premiering two material innovations made out of authentic wood at CES 2022

Zeta Energy (Special Award Critical Materials 2020), February 1st:
Zeta Energy Closes $23 Million Series A Funding led by Moore Strategic Ventures for its Advanced Lithium Sulfur Battery Technology