CleanTech is the name for products that are already on the market that help fight the climate crisis, save resources, or make processes more efficient. CleanTech startups have made it their goal to make the economy and society more efficient, sustainable, and clean.
To do this, they are usually started by smart, tech-savvy businesspeople who adapt their work to the needs of the times.
One thing that makes a CleanTech startup unique is that it has a good idea for sustainability, which is often linked to a long and expensive development phase. Industry and investors are now realizing how important it is to back CleanTech startups and how valuable they will be in the long run. As a result, CleanTech startups are getting more attention, and capital, and helping to grow. We’ve also seen new investment funds like HTGF, ECBF, and Capricorn pop up to help entrepreneurs and innovators like these.
Also, the European Innovation Council now helps entrepreneurs with big ideas who come up with innovative solutions to urgent environmental problems. This helps the Green Deal and the plan for Europe’s recovery.
we’ve found 7 startups that are ahead of the competition and offer different solutions in different areas of CleanTech. We’ll be keeping an eye on them over the next year or so.
The biggest problems with renewable energies are making sure there is enough energy when it is needed and storing energy when there is more than enough. Reversion has a single system that solves both of these problems. Electrolysis is used to turn extra power from wind turbines and photovoltaics into synthetic methane, which can then be stored. If energy is needed, the same system can use the methane it has stored to make energy. Also, the system is meant to make the energy supply system much more efficient than it is now, based on the latest technology. Reversion keeps the power grid stable and makes clean gases. This plan is getting $7 million in funding in June 2022, and more people will be interested in it now that gas prices are so high. The company got its start in 2022 in Bavaria as a spin-off from TU Munich.
2) Geyser Batteries
Not only does the way power is made need to be less harmful to the environment to help move toward a carbon-free future, but so does the way energy is stored. Geyser Batteries, based in Helsinki, Finland, creates and makes a new class of high-power, water-based, non-lithium batteries that can go through over a million fast charging cycles even when the temperature is very low. The batteries are priced fairly and have the lowest carbon footprint in the industry. Since its start in 2018, the new company has raised €2.2 million.
3) ESy-Labs GmbH
The carbon footprint of the chemicals and materials we use every day is big. All of the chemicals and materials we use in our daily lives could be made carbon-neutral by using renewable energy and electric power to make them. ESy-Labs is a company that grew out of the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz and the Fraunhofer Society. It has shown that chemicals and pharmaceutical compounds can be made by electrosynthesis instead of using reagents that are not sustainable, expensive, toxic, and stoichiometric. By combining this with high-throughput screening and AI, they are on the way from the lab to the technical scale. This German startup was started in 2018, and High-Tech Gründerfonds recently gave it a VC equity investment to show how much they like it.
4) Catalyst UP
Going carbon-neutral is not the same as being carbon-free, and most people know that carbon will still be needed in many areas because it is a key part of most materials, we use every day. The focus should be on making carbon sources that can be used over and over again. UP Catalyst uses molten salt carbon capture and electrochemical transformation to recycle CO2 and make valuable carbonaceous nanomaterials that can be used in battery and supercapacitor technologies. This caught the attention of the European Space Agency (ESA), and in 2021, they signed an agreement to work together to study how carbon and oxygen are made on Mars. In 2022, UP Catalyst also raised €1.6 million from EIT Raw Materials and closed its first investment round for €500,000. In 2019, the business began in Tallinn.
5) We Are Galaktika
Most people may not know this, but silicones are one of the most important molecules in modern life. They are used to make sealants, adhesives, lubricants, medicine, cooking tools, thermal insulation, and electrical insulation. The making of silicone, and therefore its use of it, is bad for ecosystems and uses a lot of energy. Because of this, Berlin-based We Are Galaktika wants to cut the CO2 footprint of silicone by a lot—by 66%, to be exact. With their new chemical process and take-back system, they are closing the material cycle of silicone and making new silicone from old material over and over again, without any loss of quality. They started in December 2020, and they will soon get a lot of attention because they are solving a big problem and because they offer a platform solution.
6) Vienna Textile Lab
Up to 20% of all industrial water pollution is caused by fashion. The waste is often a mix of chemicals that can cause cancer, dyes, salts, and heavy metals that not only hurt the environment but also pollute water sources that people need to drink. The products of Vienna Textile Lab are going to change this. Since 2017, the company has been making biogenic dyes for textiles, which are more environmentally friendly than traditional synthetic colors used in the fashion industry. Vienna Textile Lab (VTL) started working with clients like fashion companies in 2022. (e.g. Albini Group). Through EU-funded projects like the WORTH Partnership, ESA/OSIP, ELIIT, and Small but Perfect, the company also worked with designers and started partnerships. Austria Wirts hafts service has also given a seed funding grant of €750k to Vienna Textile Lab.
As a source of energy, hydrogen is nice because it doesn’t give off CO2, but it’s still not used very much. What’s up? Since it is a gas, it is hard to move around and store at room temperature. Since 2015, the French company HySiLabs has been coming up with new ways to make hydrogen fly and use its full potential. The company’s product is a liquid fuel made from hydrogen that is stable, non-toxic, non-explosive, doesn’t give off any emissions, and can be stored, so customers can use it for different things at room temperature. HySiLabs is one of the things that will help us get to a net-zero future, and the business world and investors will soon be interested in them even more. Because of this, the more than €2 million raised in 2018 is just the start. Even more so now that the European Commission has said it will create a new European Hydrogen Bank to invest €3 billion in building a market for hydrogen in the future.