Central regions | Finance, business | Materials, extraction

RVCs venture fund invests in next gen ion-exchange technology

26 Jul '13
Bioprocess Capital Ventures, a VC fund set up by Russian Venture Company (RVC), has bought into Axion Rare & Precious Metals, RVC announced earlier this week.

The deals value has yet to be specified; the source only disclosed that the investment was expected to help fine-tune the technology of making the new AXION ion-exchange materials and produce trial runs of such materials for industrial testing.

Axion Rare & Precious Metals, a Bioprocess Capital Ventures portfolio company, was set up three years ago to focus on the development of Russian ion-exchange materials possessing adaptive selectivity properties.

The technology is believed to be able to considerably improve the efficiency of processing rare metal containing raw material. AXION, the companys flagship new product, is an ion-exchange polymer reportedly capable of extracting uranium, thorium, indium, rare-earths, scandium, cesium, lithium and other ions from compound chemical solutions with a high degree of selectivity.

Technologies used for such processing today are said to be unproductive, which necessitates multiple-stage production methodologies and leads to increased resource and energy consumption, and to the accumulation of waste.

The properties of the new material suggest a broad range of possible applications, including nuclear energy. RVC underscored that this is one of the key reasons why its venture fund has invested in Axion Rare & Precious Metals.

We believe this is an advanced technology, which we are considering as part of our nuclear tech plans; so this is RVCs first project in nuclear energy. However, applications for the Axion Rare & Precious Metals technology are wide, and we expect a good ROI on this project. We intend to aggressively promote the AXION product in both Russian and international markets, RVC quoted Bioprocess Capital Ventures CEO Vladimir Tezov as saying.

It is expected that the commercial introduction of ion-exchange materials with adaptive selectivity will help cut the cost of metal production and reduce the loss of metals in production processes.

Axion Rare & Precious Metals has been a resident of the Skolkovo innovation hubs nuclear cluster since September 2011. Later that year, in December, the Skolkovo Foundation approved an $876k grant for the young company.
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Tags: investment (573) / Bioprocess Capital Ventures (4) / AXION (2) / RVC (172) / ion exchange materials (0) / Vladimir Tezov (0) / Axion Rare & Precious Metals (0) /

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