NanobOx, a University College Dublin (UCD) spin-out company, has closed a EUR 900,000 funding round from a consortium of Irish venture capital investors led by The Yield Lab, with participation from DeepIE Ventures and Growing Capital.
NanobOx has developed novel, patented technology that adds gases such as oxygen, ozone and carbon dioxide to water using nanobubbles. This funding will see the company complete field trials in agriculture and aquaculture, with the aim of going to market in 2024.
“Our revolutionary nanobubble technology generates nanobubbles using a low-voltage electric field that has no moving parts,” said CEO, John Favier, co-founder of NanobOx with Mohammad Reza Ghaani, who co-developed the technology while at UCD and who is currently a Professor of Engineering at Trinity College Dublin. “It requires less energy than it takes to power a lightbulb, in contrast with competing methods of nanobubble production that consume hundreds of watts of power.”
A particular focus for NanobOx is using its technology to add oxygen to water using only ambient air. “We uniquely generate nanobubbles from air that are enriched with oxygen, providing an oxygen-transfer efficiency of 90%, compared to less than 20% using conventional aeration,” added Favier. “Our first-generation products are being designed under exclusive license from UCD for use in agriculture and aquaculture to increase crop yield and reduce input costs.”
In aquaculture, NanobOx aims to radically cut the cost of oxygenation, as well as enhance fish health and boost the growth rate. Ireland’s Goatsbridge Trout Farm and Connemara Abalone shellfish farm will investigate how the aquaculture sector can maximize the benefits of the technology.
“NanobOx technology can be deployed to significantly reduce energy costs and enhance performance in any bioprocess requiring the addition of oxygen to process water, including wastewater treatment, industrial bioreactors and environmental remediation,” Favier said.
NanobOx was the winner of Enterprise Ireland’s Big Ideas One to Watch award in 2022. It has been recognized by Bord na Móna in its Accelerate Green program, as one of a cohort of early-stage companies in Ireland bringing innovative sustainable technologies to the market, with the potential to have a major impact globally.