Oxford, United Kingdom, 08 January 2024 – FluoRok, a deep-tech start-up company developing revolutionary processes to access fluorochemicals in an efficient, safe, clean and sustainable way, has been awarded a feasibility study grant of £750,000 by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) via its Faraday Battery Challenge to scale up its disruptive chemical processes.
Developing a robust and reliable lithium-ion (Li-Ion) battery supply chain is key to meeting our net-zero targets and strengthening the role of the UK in leading the energy transition. The grant, delivered by Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency, aims to accelerate the development and commercialisation of state-of-the-art battery technologies and support growth of the UK supply chain for the battery sector.
FluoRok’s CEO, Dr Gabriele Pupo said, “This is yet another step in FluoRok’s path to reinventing a safer and greener process for the way key fluorochemicals such as Li-Ion battery electrolyte salts are manufactured. This grant will provide a strong acceleration towards industrialisation of our technology in the battery sector and further support the UK in meeting its ambitious net-zero targets.”
In partnership with globally renowned deep tech innovation centre CPI and experts in Li-Ion battery technology at WMG at the University of Warwick, the project will focus on scaling up FluoRok’s novel process for the HF-free manufacture of electrolyte salts (LiPF6 and LiFSI). These fluorine-containing materials are key components in Li-Ion batteries yet are almost entirely manufactured in Asia Pacific via a hazardous and unsustainable process based on the highly toxic chemical, hydrogen fluoride (HF). This project will enable FluoRok and CPI to scale-up HF-free technology towards a pilot plant, while WMG’s electrolyte testing in Li-Ion batteries will ensure the required quality standards for mass adoption.
Dr Andrew D. Schwarz, FluoRok’s Business Development Director said, “FluoRok’s central aim is to work with the fluorochemical industry to develop cost competitive, localised and sustainable supply chains in critical fluorochemicals. FluoRok is proud to be working with CPI, WMG and Innovate UK to achieve these goals. We passionately believe that our technology is a crucial enabler to net-zero and a unique way to introduce a cyclic economy in fluorochemical manufacturing.”
Dr Keri Goodwin, Chief Technologist at CPI said, “At CPI we’re committed to making bright ideas a reality and we can’t wait to start work on this exciting project. Scaling up novel and sustainable processes for battery materials will be crucial as we look to cement the UK’s supply chain in battery manufacturing. Projects like these have the potential not just to revolutionise the way industries can operate sustainably, but they are part of a bigger picture to eventually provide highly skilled, highly paid jobs for the communities they serve.”
FluoRok is a start-up company based in Oxford, UK and focused on fluorochemical R&D, manufacturing and licensing. It develops novel and transformational technologies to access fluorochemicals in an efficient, safe and sustainable way. Founded in 2022, the company builds on decades of research from FluoRok CEO Gabriele Pupo and Professor Véronique Gouverneur at the University of Oxford.
FluoRok’s proprietary technology directly employs fluorinated waste material or naturally occurring fluorite mineral as a source, to access high-value fluorochemicals that are key to the world’s energy transition, our global food supply, and our health. Its innovative solution reduces energy requirements, lowers CO2 emissions and enables reshoring of fluorochemical manufacturing due to intrinsic process safety. Traditional barriers to entry such as high capital expenditure, regulatory challenges, and complex controls of hazardous operations, are circumvented, thus allowing for easy adoption and rapid scale-up of the technology.
FluoRok is backed by Oxford Science Enterprises, an independent, billion-pound investment company, that funds transformational businesses via its unique partnership with the University of Oxford.
Contact: Gabriele Pupo or Clare Simpson, email@example.com
CPI catalyses the adoption of advanced technologies and manufacturing solutions to benefit people, places, and our planet.
We’re a pioneering social enterprise that accelerates the development, scale-up and commercialisation of smart AgriFoodTech, energy storage, HealthTech, materials, and pharma innovations. Through our incredible innovation experts and infrastructure, we look beyond the obvious to transform healthcare and drive towards a sustainable future.
As a trusted partner of industry, academia, government, entrepreneurs and the investment community, we connect the dots within the innovation ecosystem to make great ideas and inventions a reality. We believe by working together we can build a better collective future, and as part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, we facilitate access to world-class organisations to deliver transformation across industries and landscapes.
Creating lasting global impact from the North of England and Scotland, we invest in people and disruptive technologies to invigorate economies, create circular supply chains and make our world a better place.
About WMG at the University of Warwick
WMG is a world leading research and education group, transforming organisations and driving innovation through a unique combination of collaborative research and development, and pioneering education programmes.
As an international role model for successful partnerships between academia and the private and public sectors, WMG develops advancements nationally and globally, in applied science, technology and engineering, to deliver real impact to economic growth, society and the environment.
WMG’s education programmes focus on lifelong learning of the brightest talent, from the WMG Academies for Young Engineers, degree apprenticeships, undergraduate and postgraduate, through to professional programmes.
An academic department of the University of Warwick, and a centre for the HVM Catapult, WMG was founded by the late Professor Lord Kumar Bhattacharyya in 1980 to help reinvigorate UK manufacturing and improve competitiveness through innovation and skills development.
About Innovate UK
Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, is the UK’s innovation agency. We work to create a better future by inspiring, involving and investing in businesses developing life-changing innovations. With an annual budget of over £1billion we provide businesses with the expertise, facilities and funding they need to test, demonstrate and evolve their ideas, driving UK productivity and economic growth.