Cambridge University and UCL joint spin-out to accelerate roll-out of AI-based industrial decarbonization technology
Carbon Re, a climate tech company building state-of-the-art AI to decarbonize energy-intensive industries, has raised £4.2 million seed funding to scale up development and deployment of its novel technology. Their Delta Zero AI platform enables the highly pollutive cement industry to reduce over 50 kilotonnes of annual CO2 emissions per plant. Each installation of the software saves as much CO2 as taking 11,000 cars off the road.
Energy-intensive industries, such as cement, steel and glass, account for over 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions and are one of the hardest sectors of the economy to decarbonize. The current plan for these industries relies heavily on Carbon Capture and Storage, a technology that will take decades to scale and increases the cost of these fundamental materials by as much as 60%. Carbon Re’s platform, in contrast, is already reducing emissions today, cuts the cost of production, and requires no new equipment.
Planet A Ventures, a Berlin-based green tech venture capital firm led the investment, with follow-on participation from Clean Growth Fund, UCL Technology Fund and Cambridge Enterprise. The new investment will enable product roll-out into the global cement market and expand into other energy-intensive industries, such as steel and glass.
In just two years, Carbon Re’s innovative software is already being used in pilot projects to cut fuel use and CO2 emissions by up to 10% at cement plants in Europe, Asia and the Americas.
Sherif Elsayed-Ali, CEO of Carbon Re said, “At a time of escalating fuel prices and increasing emphasis on CO2 reduction targets, there is an urgent need for action. Carbon Re is connecting the biggest challenge of our time – climate change – with the biggest opportunity – advances in AI. Our cement plant trials have demonstrated that Delta Zero can deliver dramatic CO2 savings on a near-live basis.
“Our platform provides a unique solution for energy-intensive industries that delivers £2 million in fuel cost savings and 50,000 tonnes of CO2 savings per plant. This latest funding round will enable us to accelerate our mission to reduce carbon emissions by gigatonnes every year.”
Carbon Re’s cloud-based Delta Zero platform models the unique production environment of each plant and uses advanced machine learning and AI techniques to achieve previously out-of-reach operational efficiencies. Delta Zero continuously analyses manufacturing data to enable plant operators to optimise production processes on a near-live basis.
Optimal processes can be identified for the lowest possible CO2 output and fuel use, reducing operational costs and carbon emissions to otherwise unachievable levels, with no capital expenditure.
Jan Christoph Gras, General Partner at Planet A, said: “Energy-intensive materials, such as cement and steel, are the backbone of modern economies but they account for more than 20% of global CO2 emissions. Carbon Re’s state-of-the-art AI solution has the potential to tackle some of the toughest challenges on the road to a carbon-neutral future. Starting with fuel efficiency in cement, Carbon Re has the ambition and capability to develop a large portfolio of advanced solutions across multiple industries – and substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”