Airthium’s Quest for 250 Degrees in Decarbonised Industrial Heat Pumps

March 26, 2024
1 min read
Airthium team with their HEAT PUMP TECHNOLOGY

Hello Tomorrow, the flagship event for French deep tech, wrapped up last week. But already, back in 2016, the Expo was making Franck Lahaye, the co-founder of Airthium, quite driven. It was then that he met Andrei Klochko, a young researcher from the École Polytechnique who was doing a PhD in plasma physics. 

Together, the entrepreneurs developed an engine that acts like a heat pump, capable of converting electricity into high-temperature heat (from 150 to 550 degrees) in the form of steam or hot air. This kind of boiler allows for the decarbonisation of heat produced during industrial processes, which are most of the time powered by fossil fuels, like natural gas, when carried out at high temperatures.

A heat pump allows for less energy consumption, but Airthium’s innovation lies in its ability to reach high temperatures. The first prototype, which is expected to be ready over the summer, aims initially to reach 200-250 degrees. Franck Lahaye mentioned that there are a few startups developing, particularly in Nordic countries where there is a significant focus on decarbonized energy. He noted that it seemed to be somewhat of a race to see which company would reach 250 degrees.

Similar Post

The entrepreneurs were supported in 2017 by Y Combinator, the star accelerator from the United States, before joining the Air Liquide accelerator. At the time, the startup managed to raise 500,000 euros “just on an idea” and wanted to specialize in energy storage, a segment that requires raising a lot of capital.

The technopreneur, leading a small team of approximately fifteen employees, stated that in 2022, they had abandoned the idea of selling their engine in the form of an industrial boiler.  A gear shift that allowed him to raise three million euros with Daphni, Eren Group, and Polytechnique Ventures. This financing will be supplemented by debt.

The startup benefits from a more favorable environment in terms of fundraising with the “trend” in recent years of deep tech – these so-called disruptive innovations. In 2023, the sector accumulated 3.77 billion euros of funding in France, notes a recent study by Bpifrance.

Commercialisation is planned for 2027, with a pilot in 2026. To accelerate, Airthium is in discussion with the McCain group to support the Canadian frozen potato giant in France and Europe to decarbonise the cooking of its products.

Sunita Somvanshi

With over two decades of dedicated service in the state environmental ministry, this seasoned professional has cultivated a discerning perspective on the intricate interplay between environmental considerations and diverse industries. Sunita is armed with a keen eye for pivotal details, her extensive experience uniquely positions her to offer insightful commentary on topics ranging from business sustainability and global trade's environmental impact to fostering partnerships, optimizing freight and transport for ecological efficiency, and delving into the realms of thermal management, logistics, carbon credits, and energy transition. Through her writing, she not only imparts valuable knowledge but also provides a nuanced understanding of how businesses can harmonize with environmental imperatives, making her a crucial voice in the discourse on sustainable practices and the future of industry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Nurse taking care of newborn babies who are treated inside Neonatal intensive care unit at Yekatit 12 Hospital Medical College
Previous Story

Global Fertility Plummets: Only 6 Nations Above Replacement Rate by 2100

Amazon ablaze in 2023
Next Story

2023 Amazon Inferno: 26.4 Million Acres Ablaze, Climate Crisis to Blame?

Latest from Technology

Don't Miss

People witness the coming of storm

WMO Day 2024 Highlights The Frontline Battle Against Global Warming

World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Day is celebrated on