Materials developer florrent closed a $2.1 million pre-seed round to develop high-tech ultracapacitors made from hemp, the company tells Axios exclusively.
Catch up fast: Ultracapacitors store and release energy faster than a conventional battery. They’re also expensive.
- They’re currently found in some cars, electric grids, and wind turbines. Startups are racing to expand those applications.
What’s happening: florrent has developed an ultracapacitor made from hemp instead of the material commonly used today: coconut husks.
- Hemp can be grown more sustainably and in more places, and it offers potential better materials performance, florrent tells Axios.
Between the lines: The 2018 Farm Bill that legalized mass agricultural production of hemp cleared the way for florrent to begin using the crop, CEO Jose LaSalle says.
Driving the news: florrent closed its latest funding round in July, led by MassVentures.
- MassMutual Catalyst Fund, AIN Ventures, Tale Venture Partners, NextFab Ventures and Boston Impact Initiative participated.
Of note: The startup is part of incubator Greentown Labs in Somerville, Mass. Its R&D headquarters is at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.