World Materials Forum
Newsletter 44

Dear all,

Lots on critical raw materials again this month with the usual papers focused on the problems (Race for Lithium becoming a question of national security in TRT World, EV supply chains becoming critical in the US - Rice University - and in Europe - Green Car Congress) as well as (this is just great!) more and more papers highlighting possible solutions: Government financing such as Canada 3.8B$ budget - Green Car Congress, recovery and recycling techniques and programmes - and Daily Mail, substitution for cobalt and rare earth - UPI and - and very interesting perspectives offered by manganese - IEEE Spectrum.

Now on the scientific front with progress on performance and cost of solar technologies at Chalmers and at University of Toronto, more affordable hydrogen power thanks to nickel cells at Cornell, recycled plastics used for carbon capture at RICE, solar nanowire-nanotube for easy access to clean drinking water at EPFL, a new heat engine with no moving parts at MIT, engineered crystals for energy efficient computing at Berkeley and, last but not least, a column in Nature discussing the crucial topic of data sharing in the scientific community.

Regarding sustainability we selected 4 initiatives: some progress made at a meeting of government officials from around the globe on biodiversity in Geneva, a new Ukraine-accelerated renewables plan for Germany, a project of solar/batteries hybrid grids presented in The Conversation and TechXplore describing the switching of Tokyu railways to renewable energy only as from April 1st.

Also 23 of our Start Up alumni were in the news this month : two impressive funding rounds (Bcomp - Switzerland, Brimstone - USA), further research funding (Citrine - USA) as well as one major Scale Up project (Carbios - France), new or strengthening partnerships (BComp - Switzerland with Mercedes, Carbios - France with Solvay, FREDsense - Canada with Ginkgo Bioworks, Kebotix - USA with the University of Toronto, Twelve - USA with Shopify's Sustainability Fund, UbiQD - USA with SMW International, UBQ Materials - Israel with Teknor Apex), a few awards (Aerosint - Belgium, CompPair - France, Safi Organics - Kenya), encouraging development (Cyclopure - USA, Zeta Energy - USA) and some interesting press coverage as usual (Applied Nanolayers - Netherlands, EH Group - Switzerland, Fluence Analytics - USA, PolySpectra - USA, Rein4ced - Netherlands, Woodoo - France). Worth mentioning as well that Imagine Intelligent Materials - Australia has been acquired by Ionic Industries, and Mosaic Materials - USA by Baker Hughes. 

As always, we hope that you enjoy the reading.

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


Green Car Congress, April 2nd: 
Benchmark Gigafactories for Europe paints grim raw material supply picture, April 6th: 
Testing 2 metal recovery techniques - resin in pulp and resin in moist mix - to extract target metals from low grade ores, fine minerals and tailings to boost Australia's and India's supply 

Green Car Congress, April 8th: 
Canadian budget calls for $3.8B to launch Critical Minerals Strategy

TRT World, April 11th: 
The race for lithium is now a question of national security

UPI, April 13th: 
Lithium-ion batteries going cobalt-free; nickel next on the chopping block

Rice University, April 20th: 
Electrical vehicle supply chains owned mostly by China jeopardize US energy transition 

IEEE Spectrum, April 25th: 
Manganese could be the secret behind truly mass-market EVs, April 25th: 
Fewer rare-earths needed for permanent magnets 

Daily Mail, April 25th: 
Europe needs to dramatically increase recycling of raw materials for electrical cars 


Science Direct, March 16th:
Solar energy storage and conversion to electrical power generation is demonstrated at Chalmers University

IEEE Spectrum, March 28th: 
Nickel cells for more-affordable hydrogen power 

Nature, April 4th: 
Focus on findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable scientific data

Rice University, April 5th: 
Treated plastic waste good at grabbing carbon dioxide

EPFL, April 7th:
Solar nanowire-nanotube filter offers easy access to clean drinking water

Berkeley University, April 7th: 
Engineered crystals further contribution to reducing energy consumption of data usage and storage

University of Toronto, April 7th: 
Quantum innovation advances low-cost alternative solar technology

Science, April 13th: 
New heat engine with no moving part as efficient as steam engine at MIT


Nature, March 31st: 
Progress on biodiversity in Geneva 

Reportwire, April 11th: 
A new Ukraine-accelerated renewables plan in Germany 

TheConversation, April 25th: 
Solar / batteries hybrid grids are poised for explosive growth

TechXplore, April 28th: 
Major Japan railway now powered only by renewable energy


Aerosint (N 2017), April 11th: 
Aerosint won the Innovation Award at the 3D Print Summit in Lyon (FR)

Applied Nanolayers (N 2020), April 7th: 
Applied Nanolayers’ graphene is approaching sun synchronous orbit in SpaceX mission 

BComp (N 2018), April 5th: 
Bcomp has raised $35m in a Series B round with BWM, Porsche and Volvo as main investors

BComp (N 2018), April 25th: 
Mercedes-AMG GT4 race cars now equipped with Bcomp natural fiber composite bumpers

Brimstone (Grand Prix 2020), April 28th: 
Brimstone raises $55M in huge pre-revenue round

Carbios (N 2017 - Grand Prix Scale Up 2021), April 28th: 
Solvay and Carbios demonstrate enzymatic depolymerization in PET/PVDC barrier film

Carbios (N 2017 - Grand Prix Scale Up 2021), April 16th: 
Carbios heads East of France for its first plant (FR)

Citrine Informatics (Grand Prix 2017), April 13th: 
Citrine Informatics Continues Rapid Growth in Q1 2022

CompPair (N 2020), April 28th: 
CompPair wins the Sustainability Award at Tech Tour Future22

Cyclopure (N 2020), April 13th: 
Cyclopure highlighted in the Brockovitch Report for its new at-home PFAS solution 

EH Group (Coup de Coeur Award 2020), April 1st: 
EH Group selected to be part of the DeepTech Alliance Clean Energy Accelerato

Fluence Analytics (N 2019), April 20th: 
Fluence Analytics names new CEO to lead industrial growth

FREDsense (N 2019), April 13th: 
FREDsense and Ginkgo Bioworks announce partnership to develop water quality biosensors

Graphene MG (N 2020), April 26th: 
Graphene Manufacturing Group Announces Investor Relations Agreements

Imagine Intelligent Materials (N 2018), March 14th: 
Ionic Industries acquires Imagine Intelligent Materials

Kebotix (N 2019), April 12th: 
Kebotix, University of Toronto Partner on organic light-emitting diodes R&D

Mosaic Materials (N 2019), April 22nd: 
Baker Hughes acquires Mosaic Materials

PolySpectra (N 2018), March 28th: 
Raymond Weitekamp, CEO and founder, highlighted on 3D Printing Industry website

Rein4ced (N 2018), April 22nd: 
Cycling forward with Rein4ced! 

Safi Organics (N 2019), April 22nd: 
Safi Organics is one of the top 15 in Elon Musk's XPRIZE Carbon Removal milestone award

Twelve (N 2019), April 14th: 
Twelve selected as a 2022 BloombergNEFPioneer

Twelve (N 2019), March 28th: 
Twelve partners with Shopify’s Sustainability Fund to accelerate on E-Jet’s adoption by commercial airlines

UbiQD (N 2020), April 28th: 
UbiQD and SWM International to Co-Develop Next Generation Quantum Dot Interlayers for Electricity-Producing Windows

UBQ Materials (N 2021), April 18th: 
UBQ Materials: The alchemist turning waste into reusable plastic

UBQ Materials (N 2021), April 27th: 
UBQ partners with Teknor Apex for eco-conscious thermoplastic elastomers 

Woodoo (N 2017), April 27th: 
Woodoo and its biomaterials duely highlighted on the French Government's website (FR)

Zeta Energy (Special Award Critical Materials 2020), April 27th:
Zeta Energy Demonstrates a Scaled Process for Creating a Three-dimensional Carbon Nanotube-based Anode