Irish Startup Secures $15m for Energy-saving Fluid
An Irish start-up, HT Materials Science (HTMS), has gained $15 million (€13.8 million) in support from financiers, including Aramco Ventures and Barclays, to progress the development of a product aimed at reducing energy costs in buildings.
HTMS has formulated a Maxwell liquid that diminishes energy utilisation in commercial building's heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. This liquid is useful in diminishing the expenses and carbon discharges related to those systems.
The $15 million was invested from Aramco Ventures of Saudi Arabia, Barclays Sustainable Impact Capital, CDP Venture Capital from Italy, and from Progress Tech Transfer, an investor well-versed in this area.
McStay, the chairman of HTMS, declared that the funds will be used to employ sales personnel with specialised knowledge to sustain the focus of the business on multinational customers around the world, as well as to finance further research and development.
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He pointed out that utilizing Maxwell - which was named in honor of the groundbreaking Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell - in the water utilized in cooling systems can help boost its effectiveness.
Mr McStay cautioned that, although water is an easy-to-use thermal fluid, it is "inefficient when it comes to conducting heat". To improve its efficacy and reduce energy expenditure, HTMS developed Maxwell, an aluminium particle combination, to enhance the process.
He noted that the product has the potential to reduce carbon emissions from heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, and can lower associated bills by approximately 15%.
Aramco, several US pharmaceutical companies, and Swire Pacific, a real estate giant, have all purchased the product from the business. The latter company incorporated the item into a shopping centre in Hong Kong.
The trials have been lucrative, indicating that more extensive sales could be forthcoming. HTMS focused their efforts on large corporations since they tend to possess numerous structures with intricate heating and air conditioning mechanisms.
The appeal of Maxwell's is that it makes current systems more efficient, while avoiding the need to replace them.
According to Mr McStay, this is a critical issue in combatting the carbon footprint of buildings. Companies may not be able to manage the cost of upgrading costly heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, making it hard to cut down on their energy consumption.
Businesses could be apprehensive about the potential risks of utilizing their costly existing equipment in an innovative way.
Mr McStay remarked, "Engineers are being addressed and asked to put something other than water into their cooling systems."
HTMS devotes attention to its sales personnel since they require specialized understanding to answer any questions that potential customers may have.
The reasoning behind the product's title is based on Maxwell's equation, a concept familiar to all engineers. According to Mr McStay, it deals with the transfer of heat.
At HTMS, there are 25 personnel, some of which are based in Italy, where the product is manufactured and where it was first designed at Salento University.
Thomas Grizetti, whose expertise lies in finance, was operating in the Republic when his research pointed him to the concept that made him the CEO of the company, thus making the Republic the headquarters of the business.
HTMS has collaborated with Trinity College Dublin on research and has been supported by Enterprise Ireland.
According to Mr McStay, the company experienced no difficulty in locating the necessary know-how in the Republic and saw it as a suitable starting point for dealing with multinationals.