MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Niron Magnetics, the company developing the world’s first high performance permanent magnets free of rare earths, today announced it has raised $21.3M in new financing. The Volvo Cars Tech Fund and Volta Energy Technologies join existing investors Anzu Partners and the University of Minnesota. Niron will use the funding to build its pilot production facility in Minnesota and accelerate the development of its Clean Earth Magnet™ technology.
Surging global demand for electric vehicles (EVs) and other motorized devices has highlighted global dependency on the unsustainably-produced rare earth materials currently required for the magnets needed in electric drivetrains and motors. Niron’s Clean Earth Magnet™ technology, developed from a decade of research, leverages materials science innovations to eliminate the need for rare earth content in magnets. Instead, Niron utilizes some of the most common elements on earth – iron and nitrogen – to deliver better performance and lower costs. Niron’s technology delivers magnets that are less expensive, more sustainable, globally available, and made from abundant input materials not subject to supply constraints or price instability. Niron’s production process is up to 95% less damaging across certain environmental impacts than alternatives, as its input materials require no toxic mining and refining.
“The demand for more sustainable vehicles, power generation and electronic devices should be met with innovation in the magnets that drive these technologies, rather than increasing the mining for rare earth materials,” said Andy Blackburn, CEO of Niron Magnetics. “This new funding from investors like Volta Energy Technologies and Volvo Cars Tech Fund shows that there is strong global interest in making our unique Clean Earth Magnet™ technology widely available.”
The first generation of Niron’s Clean Earth Magnet™ will offer a magnetic field strength of approximately 0.9 Tesla and will address a wide range of applications from audio speakers, magnetic sensors and consumer appliances to industrial motors and automotive accessory motors. The company’s second-generation magnet will offer an industry leading magnetic field strength of 1.5 Tesla and will address higher torque density applications and high operating temperatures – including electric vehicle drivetrains and wind turbines.
“Volta is excited to be invested in Niron Magnetics as the company introduces their rare-earth-free permanent magnets for use in electric motors. Such innovative technology is vitally important to enable the adoption of both electric vehicles and renewable energy from wind, without reliance on rare earth minerals,” said Jeff Chamberlain, CEO of Volta Energy Technologies. “Niron complements Volta’s growing portfolio of technology companies that can improve the performance and reduce the cost of electric vehicles and renewable power.”
“By investing in the technological advancements happening at Niron, we are able to help build a more sustainable electric economy from the inside out,” said Pratik Budhdev, Global Investment Director of Volvo Cars Tech Fund. “We look forward to working with the team to further enhance their roadmap of rare-earth free magnets that can help make a low carbon economy more accessible.”
Niron will begin sampling in limited quantity to selected partners, who can collaborate closely with Niron to design the magnets into suitable high-volume applications.
To learn more about Niron Magnetics and its Clean Earth Magnet technology, please visit https://nironmagnetics.com/.
About Niron Magnetics
Niron Magnetics is developing the world’s first advanced manufacturing process for the mass production of permanent magnets powered by its breakthrough material formulation. Niron’s proprietary Clean Earth Magnet™ technology based on Iron nitride enables magnets that possess inherently higher magnetization and can be produced at a lower cost compared to today’s rare-earth magnets and will enable a revolution in the design of new electric motors and generators. Niron participates in a U.S. Department of Energy funded project that aims to develop more cost effective and sustainable drivetrains for electric vehicles. For more information, please visit https://nironmagnetics.com/.
About Volta Energy Technologies
Volta Energy Technologies identifies and invests in battery and energy storage technology after performing deep diligence with the support of unparalleled global research institutions. Seeded by strategic corporate investors, Volta connects innovators with investors and relevant industries that are adopting energy storage technology, delivering strategic returns for all. To learn more, visit volta.vc and follow @VoltaLink on Twitter