Joule Closes $30 Million Funding Round Proceeds to help accelerate the drive of renewable solar fuels from lab to commercialization.
Cambridge, Mass. [WorldofRenewables.com]
Joule today announced the closing of a $30 million second round of funding, further strengthening the company’s position as it advances from testing to high-capacity production of renewable diesel fuel starting in 2012. The round includes investments from undisclosed institutional and private sources that joined Flagship Ventures, Joule’s founding venture capital investor.
The proceeds will help to accelerate Joule’s advancements in a number of areas, including its pilot operations now underway in Leander, Texas, where the production process for its renewable solar fuels, including fungible diesel, will be tested. The funds will also support key developments in genome engineering, bioprocessing and hardware engineering to optimize productivity and generate product samples in quantities that will fully validate Joule’s process beyond the lab.
“What Joule has developed is more than just another promising technology. It’s a commercial-ready system with rapid scale-up potential to transform domestic diesel production as soon as 2012,” said Bill Sims, president and CEO. “Propelled by this latest funding round, we intend to execute on an aggressive timeline to market by hitting key proof points that will substantiate the quality of our product and the scale and efficiency of our process.”
In line with its broad vision and move beyond R&D, Joule is also implementing a corporate name transition from Joule Biotechnologies, Inc. to Joule Unlimited, Inc., effective immediately.
“While biotechnology is core to our approach, our strategic focus is on the end game: widespread replacement of fossil fuels. Our new corporate identity better captures the magnitude of this mission, while also reflecting the virtually unlimited potential of our transformative process.”
Joule’s Helioculture™ platform was engineered specifically to overcome the challenges of oil exploration and production, which involves very high risk, complexity and unpredictability. By contrast, Joule has achieved a solar platform that produces hydrocarbon fuels above ground in a direct, single-step, continuous process. Not only does this avoid costly discovery and extraction, it is a reliable process yielding a higher-quality product that is a direct replacement for diesel, bypassing the heavy refining necessary for crude oil.
Unlike fossil fuels or current biofuel alternatives, Joule’s solar fuels are:
• Not limited by the finite supply and unpredictability of fossil sources
• Not limited by the extreme risks and costs of exploration, drilling, extraction, etc.
• Not limited by massive land requirements or the need for fresh water and crops
• Not limited by dependency on costly biomass intermediates and processing
• Not limited by the high costs and infrastructure incompatibility that impede adoption of existing renewable fuels
About Joule Unlimited, Inc.
Joule is pioneering the production of Liquid Fuel from the Sun™, surpassing today’s barriers to abundant, sustainable, cost-competitive supply. Its transformational Helioculture™ platform converts sunlight and waste CO2 directly into liquid fuels in a continuous process that is not limited by costly biomass intermediates, processing or use of precious natural resources. This platform can yield renewable diesel fuel in unprecedented volumes with a fraction of the land use incurred by current methods, leapfrogging biomass-dependent approaches and eliminating the economic and environmental disadvantages of fossil fuels. Founded in 2007 by Flagship Venture Labs, Joule is privately held and headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Additional information is available at www.jouleunlimited.com.