Cohort 2023: Phoenix Carbon

Phoenix Carbon

Phoenix Carbon has the technology to make composite recycling as ubiquitous as aluminium recycling, reshaping the sustainability credentials of an entire material class. Thanks to Phoenix Carbon’s proprietary process, the recycled material maintains product parity with virgin materials – 100% identical. A circular economy is enabled that reduces landfill and CO2 emissions, whilst offering cost-effective alternatives to virgin composites.

The Problem 

Composite materials are not sustainable and are very CO2 intensive during the manufacturing process. 30kg CO2 is generated for every kg of Carbon Fibre being made – 15 times worse than steel (2kg CO2 for Steel). Lightweight materials such as composites are essential in many verticals where strength and lightweight are essential e.g. transportation. Increased adoption of this material is constrained by recycled material specification, price and sustainability legislation. Composite waste is destined for landfill – this toxic and forever lasting material must not have a dead end. 

The Solution 

Phoenix Carbon enables the adoption of composite materials by producing recycled material with ‘equivalency’ e.g. the difference between virgin and recycled fibre is negligible. Recycle composites that are a suitable substitute with a very low Co2 footprint (less than 1.4kg of CO2 per kg of Carbon Fibre) and at a lower price point compared to Virgin material. The recycled materials can be applied to the main verticals of Automotive, Aerospace, Marine and Sport Leisure.

Phoenix Carbon’s Impact

Adopting recycled materials and therefore reducing usage in Virgin materials lowers embodied CO2 emissions. This impacts at a direct primary level as well as a secondary level due to efficiencies of scale i.e enables lighter, more efficient vehicles etc. Preventing 20’000 tonnes of toxic and forever lasting composite to end up in landfill.

Why we invested

Different industries such as marine and automotive struggle to further reduce the emissions from production and operations of their products, and a key component of the solution is fibre composites that enable, for example, vehicles to be much lighter, sturdier and more efficient. But both production of these composites and their utilisation are heavy emitters and wasteful. 

In light of these challenges, Phoenix Carbon leverages a novel recycling process that turns fibre composites waste and scraps into new products while maintaining specifications parity, a key challenge in the industry. In turn, this enables manufacturers to directly reduce production footprint while increasing the efficiency of their products (vehicles, vessels, etc).

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