World Materials Forum
Newsletter 46

Dear all,

First a big thank you to all of you who joined us in Nancy for our 8th edition that was specifically focused on Huge Challenges Ahead, Act Out of the Box. And we welcomed your inputs highlighting that Speed is crucial, that we must Restart/Expand sustainable mining and refining, that Public support will be necessary to derisk the huge capital expenditures requested, that more recycling and no downcycling for both metals and plastics are needed and that we ought to keep China in the loop on decarbonation matters.

Once more this month, we noticed much attention on critical metals with strategies to secure supply chains rising both in Europe (ISPI) and the US (AG Metal miner). Also 4 interesting articles tackling the need for capacity, technology and recycling investments in the field of minerals for energy transition (, Eurek'Alert, CBC and And a study demonstrating the advantages of platinum-based catalyst for improved water treatment (USC Viterbi).

On the scientific front some novel approaches to hydrogen production at NREL (Materials Today), liquid platinum catalyst based chemical industry in Australia (FLEET), aerogel based insulation at KTH in Sweden (The Engineer), using sensing to monitor batteries performance at College de France (Nature Sustainability), extended life time for redox flow batteries at Harvard and Cambridge (Nature Chemistry) and finally, an ultrathin capacitor for energy-efficient electronics at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

In the field of sustainability, we have chosen 5 initiatives: an article from Nature exploring the huge potential of "floatovoltaics" and on the same topic a NREL article about the 1st hydro-solar plant in Africa, then how robotics could help us achieve sustainable development in Nature Communications, a focus on how BRICS are implementing digital cooperation to boost sustainable development and finally a concrete example of how EVs could be used for grid storage in the Netherlands.

Also 23 of our Start Up alumni were in the news this month : a few partnerships were announced (Bcomp - Switzerland with BMW, Cyclopure - USA with Waterkeeper Alliance, UBQ Materials - Israel with Crescent Garden), two funding rounds (Twelve - USA, Sakowin - France), many founders were interviewed (Anthro Energy - USA, Blackleaf - France, C12 - France, FREDsense - Calgary, Momentum Technologies - USA), interesting press coverage as usual (Carbios - France, Citrine Informatics - USA, Cuberg - USA, Fluence Analytics - USA, Gaphene MG - Australia, Hymag'in - France, Polystyvert - Canada, Smallmatek - Portugal, Woodoo - France) and to finish, some awards (ColdPad - France, CompPair - Switzerland, Radical Plastics - USA).

Finally we are proud that 3 of our nominees - BEFC, Keey Aerogel and Lixo - are on the list of the 22 most promising startups selected by the French Minister of Economy in the field of energy transition within the Green20 Index.

As always, we hope that you enjoy the reading.

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


USC Viterbi, June 8th:
Platinum as a non-toxic catalyst for clean, re-usable water, June 17th:
Miners must invest in critical minerals or risk energy transition

ISPI, June 17th:
Chips and rare metals: the case for European strategic autonomy and technology supremacy 

AG Metal Miner, June 22nd:
Rare Earths MMI -- US and China feud over rare earth prices

EurekAlert!, June 23rd:
Closed-loop cobalt recycling from spent lithium-ion batteries

CBC, June 25th:
Towards sustainable mining of nickel, June 29th:
New program by the US to invest 500 M$ and transform mines into new clean energy hubs


Nature Sustainability, March 5th:
Sensing is key to improve batteries performance and sustainability

Materials Today, May 19th:
New approach to hydrogen production while using perovskites at NREL in the US

FLEET, June 7th:
Liquid Pt at room temperature: The "Cool" catalyst for a sustainable revolution in industrial chemistry at Melbourne RMIT and Sydney University

The Engineer, June 8th:
Aerogel could challenge plastic-based insulation materials at KTH in Stockholm

Nature Chemistry, June 16th:
Extended life time for organic aqueous redox flow batteries thanks to joint research at Harvard in the US and Cambridge in the UK

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, June 22nd:
New ultrathin capacitor could enable energy-efficient microchips


Nature, June 7th:
Covering 10% of the world's hydropower reservoirs with "floatovoltaics" would install as much electrical capacity as is currently available for fossil-fuel power plants. But the environmental and social impacts must be assessed

NREL, June 17th:
First hydro-solar plant in West Africa

Nature Communications, June 21st:
Can robotics help us achieve sustainable development

Global Times, June 23rd:
BRICS to expand green energy, digital cooperation in bid to boost sustainable development

IEEE Spectrum, June 27th:
Using EVs for grid storage at Utrecht


Anthro Energy (N 2021), May 5th:
Co-founder interview on creating a flexible, wearable battery

Anthro Energy (N 2021), June 3rd:
Future article describing the iron man model 

Bcomp (N 2018), June 21st: 
BMW unveils new race car featuring natural fiber parts by Bcomp

Bcomp (N 2018), June 9th:
Bcomp in post-JEC World 2022 analysis of promising materials

Blackleaf (N 2021), June 13th:
Blackleaf CEO interview by the CNES (French Space Agency) (FR)

C12 (N 2021), May 30th:
Quantum computing, the sector of the future 

Carbios (N 2017 - Grand Prix Scale Up 2021), June 8th:
Carbios' ambition to become a biotech unicorn (FR)

Citrine Informatics (Grand Prix 2017), June 9th:
Citrine featured in post-JEC World 2022 analysis of promising tech&materials companies

Cold Pad (N 2020), June 8th:
Cold Pad wins the TCT Industrial Product Application Award!

CompPair (N 2020), May 19th:
CompPair wins the 1st price of Prix Strategis, Switzerland (FR)

Cuberg (Grand Prix 2018), June 28th:
Richard Wang, Cuberg founder and CEO, in the MIT's list of "35 innovators under 35"

Cyclopure (N 2020), June 6th:
Waterkeeper Alliance and Cyclopure to Test more than 130 American Waterways for PFAS Contamination

Fluence Analytics (N 2018), June 21st:
Fluence Analytics Announces Circular Economy Initiative

FREDsense Technologies (N 2018), June 6th:
FREDsense President shares company story 

Graphene Manufacturing Group (N 2020), June 15th:
Graphene Manufacturing Group targets critical energy saving & storage solutions 

Hymag'in (N 2019), June 22nd:
Hymag'In changes market and plans to raise funds (FR)

Momentum Technologies (N 2019), June 7th:
Founder of Momentum Technologies on Changing the Battery-Recycling Industry 

Polystyvert (Coup de Coeur 2018), June 3rd:
Polystyvert listed in the 50 fastest-growing green companies in Canada

Radical Plastics (N 2020), June 8th:
Radical Plastics is one of the MassVentures Stage 1 START winners and receives a $100,000 award

Sakowin (N 2022), June 17th:
Sakowin raises €9m for its methane-based hydrogen reactor

Smallmatek (N 2018), June 20th:
EU project #VIPCOAT presents its work from 1st year of cooperation, Smallmatek is a partner

Twelve (N 2019), June 14th:
Twelve named one of Inc. Magazine’s 7 “Startups Out To Fix Climate Change” for its carbon capture technology

Twelve (N 2019), June 29th:
Twelve Raises $130M Series B 

Twelve (N 2019), June 29th:
Twelve to Deploy World’s 1st Industrial-Scale Carbon Transformation Platform

UBQ Materials (N 2021), June 22nd:
UBQ Materials partners with Crescent Garden to use their bio-based thermoplastic into a product line of planters

Woodoo (N 2017), June 17th: 
Augmented wood, the 21st century material? Woodoo highlighted by the French Ministry of Agriculture. (FR)