World Materials Forum
Newsletter 47

Dear all,

Welcome back for this dense Summer Newsletter covering both July & August, with lots of news as usual in the field of critical materials: breakthroughs resulting in reduced platinum consumption (Hong Kong UST and Utrecht University), methods to extract rare earth from industrial wastes (Estonia and Penn State University), a review of the mining potential of Arctic (Geographical), a survey about China moving up the rare earth value chain (Brink) and an interesting overview about who controls the value chains of minerals needed for green energy (PIIE). And also, last but no least, a paper co authored by the French Geological Survey and proposing a methodological approach for sustainable lithium certification (Nature).

Now on the scientific front with great news in the field of plastics recycling - be indefinitely recyclable PDK newly invented by our WMF Grand Prix 2022 (Berkeley) or a new method to recycle our good old polystyrene (VirginiaTech), further progress on materials for solar energy (NREL and EPFL), less heat treatment for more energy efficient aluminium extrusion at PNNL, a Korean research on using graphene to monitor CO2/methane emissions (Nature Materials), Qudits invented at University of Innsbruck in order to improve Quantum efficiency and a breakthrough in gas separation and storage leading to more efficient green hydrogen production at Deakin University.

Also we chose to highlight 7 sustainability initiatives: an analysis on longer lasting EV batteries and the impact on the development of EV batteries recycling in Forbes, a review of recycled batteries performance for second-life applications in Science Direct, the accelerated ramp up of the hydrogen economy described in IEEE Spectrum, an Australian startup using hydrogen to repurpose coal power plants in Bloomberg, recycled automotive aluminium wastes used to store hydrogen at Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon, California's big plans for offshore floating wind power presented in Clean Technica and a consumer's guide to the new US Inflation Reduction Act in Politico.

Finally 23 of our Start Up alumni were in the news this month : multiple partnerships were announced (Bcomp - Switzerland with Stras, Carbios - France joining European consortium White Cycle, Carbios - France with Patagonia, Puma and Salomon, Inopsys - Netherlands with VITO, polySpectra - USA with Cerakote, Twelve - USA with Alaska Airlines and Microsoft, UBQ Materials - Israel with PepsiCo) as well as industrial investments (Graphene MG - Australia, Vartega - USA) , a successful funding round (ETS - USA) as well as some funding from the US Air Force (UbiQD - USA) or the US Department of Energy (PolySpectra - USA), new technical successes (Cuberg - USA), prestigious rankings or awards (Fluence Analytics - USA, Intropic Materials - USA, Nitricity - USA), interviews of founders (Applied Nanolayers - Netherlands, polySpectra - USA, Woodoo - France) and other interesting media coverage (Brimstone Energy - USA, B Comp - Switzerland, Citrine Informatics - USA, CompPair - Switzerland, MagREEsource - France, Polystyvert - Canada, Safi Organics - Kenya, Tiamat - France, UBQ Materials - Israel and Woodoo - France).

As always, we hope that you enjoy the reading.

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


TechXplore, July 1st:
Using less platinum and building the world's most durable hydrogen fuel cells at Hong Kong UST

Utrecht University, July 8th:
Reducing by a factor of 10 the amount of precious metals needed for new catalysts

ERR, July 22nd:
Estonian company develops next-generation rapid biomining to extract rare earth metals from industrial wastes

Nature, July 26th:
How to certify the origin of Lithium for Li Ion batteries

BRINK, August 7th:
How fast will China move up the rare earth value chain?

PIIE, August 8th:
A view about who controls the world's mineral needed for green energy

Geographical, August 12th:
What is the mining potential of the Arctic?

Penn. State University, August 18th:
Bio-based materials used to extract rare earth elements from electronic wastes


NREL, July 1st:
Thin Film PV technologies to make photovoltaics even greener

EPFL, July 7th:
New residential solar panels deliver record breaking efficiency

The Conversation, July 14th:
Breakthrough in gas separation and storage at Daekin University could fast track shift to green hydrogen

Nature Materials, July 18th:
Korean researchers using graphene to monitor CO2/methane emissions

PNNL, July 19th:
New technology that eliminates heat treatment steps in the production process can make aluminium extrusion 50% more energy efficient

Materials Today, July 27th:
Paper published by our WMF Grand Prix 2022 in Science Advance highlighting the interest of PDK for mixed plastics recycling

Spectrum IEEE, August 1st:
"Qudits" beyond ones and zeroes at University of Innsbruck to improve further Quantum potential, August 16th:
Extracting aromatic components of polystyrene wastes at Virginia Tech in order to recycle polystyrene into valuable products


Helmotz-Zentrum Hereon, July 14th:
Hydrogen storage materials from automotive aluminium wastes

Forbes, August 1st:
EV batteries might last longer than cars themselves

Science Direct, August 10th:
How will retired EV batteries perform in grid based second life applications?

CleanTechnica, August 16th:
California has big plans for offshore floating wind power

IEEE Spectrum, August 17th:
Are we witnessing the beginnings of an actual hydrogen economy?

Bloomberg, August 19th:
Hydrogen breakthrough in Australia that could be used to retrofit coal plants

Politico, August 21st:
A consumer's guide to the new US climate law


Applied Nanolayers (N 2020), August 5th:
Manufacturing graphene at an industrial scale with CEO Paul Hedges

Bcomp (N 2018), August 5th:
Japanese furniture designer incorporates Bcomp natural fibers into luxury REI chair

Bcomp (N 2018), August 9th:
Bcomp featured in an Autovista article about sustainable materials in the automotive industry

Brimstone Energy (Grand Prix 2020), August 18th:
Brimstone Energy part of Bill Gates big green bets

Carbios (N 2017 - Grand Prix Scale Up 2021), August 9th: Carbios joins WhiteCycle, a European consortium to recycle plastic waste

Carbios (N 2017 - Grand Prix Scale Up 2021), July 12th:
Carbios partners with Patagonia, Puma and Salomon to foster plastic circularity in the textile industry

Citrine Informatics (Grand Prix 2017), July 28th:
New records in Q2 2022 and distribution agreement signed in Japan

Citrine Informatics (Grand Prix 2017), July 21st:
Citrine Informatics is developing safe, efficient nuclear waste forms

CompPair (N 2020), August 17th:
CompPair highlighted in the article 'Seven qualities of successful scale-up CEOs'

Cuberg (Grand Prix 2018), July 21st:
Cuberg achieves near doubling of Li-metal cell cycle life

Electrified Thermal Solutions (Coup de Coeur 2021), July 20th:
ETS Closes $4.5m Funding

Fluence Analytics (N 2019), August 11th:
Fluence Analytics among Top 50 global advanced manufacturing startups by CB Insights

Graphene MG (N 2020), August 17th:
Final investment decision on Phase 1 of its manufacturing expansion project

Inopsys (N 2021), June 16th:
VITO and Inopsys on filtering endocrine-disrupting chemicals out of wastewater

Intropic Materials (N 2022), August 18th:
Intropic Materials in the 10 Biomimetic innovations to tackle climate & biodiversity challenges

Nitricity (Grand Prix 2021), August 1st:
Nitricity winner of Aspen's Keeling Curve Price 2022

PolySpectra (N 2018), July 19th:
US Department of Energy Awards $3 Million to polySpectra and Fortify to Advance 3D Printed Tooling

PolySpectra (N 2018), August 23rd:
Resin 3D Printing with CEO Raymond Weitekamp

PolySpectra (N 2018), August 23rd:
New partnership with Cerakote, the global leader in thin-film ceramic coatings

Polystyvert (Coup de Coeur 2018), August 19th:
Focus on growth

SAFI Organics (N 2019), July 21st:
Fertilizers produced from agricultural waste in Kenya (FR)

Tiamat (N 2022), August 1st:
How sodium-based batteries could solve the lithium crunch

Twelve (N 2019), July 14th:
Twelve and Alaska Airlines to collaborate with Microsoft and advance sustainable aviation fuel

UbiQD (N 2020), August 17th:
U.S. Air Force Awards UbiQD Contracts for Photovoltaic Window Technology

UBQ Materials (N 2021), August 4th:
UBQ Materials and PepsiCo utilise recycled plastics in display stands

UBQ Materials (N 2021), August 19th:
UBQ Materials' circular approach to the supply chain

Vartega (N 2020), August 16th:
Vartega announces new composites recycling facility, increased capacity, funding infusion

Woodoo (N 2017), July 6th:
Woodoo founder and CEO interviewed at the World BioEconomy Forum

Woodoo (N 2017), August 4th:
Woodoo technology featured in DirectIndustry article about sustainable construction