Ideon Technologies, a pioneer in high-resolution subsurface imaging for the mining industry, announced it closed a $16m Series A, led by Playground Global. The investment will expand Ideon’s production capacity and accelerate the commercialization of its Discovery Platform™, which is transforming the critical minerals supply chain feeding the clean energy transition.
What is the market offering of Ideon?
Ideon leverages the natural energy generated by supernova explosions in space – in the form of subatomic particles called cosmic-ray muons – to provide x-ray-like visibility up to 1km beneath the Earth’s surface. The Discovery Platform integrates proprietary muon detectors, imaging systems, inversion technologies, and artificial intelligence to deliver exceptional locational accuracy with higher spatial resolution than any other existing technique.
Ideon maps the intensity of muons underground and constructs detailed 3D density profiles of underground anomalies like mineral and metal deposits, air voids, caves, and other structures. This helps geologists identify mineral and metal deposits with precision and confidence, reducing risk and cost, saving time, and minimizing the environmental impact.
Ideon is working with some of the largest, most innovative mining firms and critical mineral suppliers, like BHP, Glencore, and Vale. With more than 50 of its patented muon detectors now deployed worldwide finding critical minerals, the Ideon team has demonstrated the competitive advantage of the technology and is now ramping up to meet customer demand.
The investment will enable Ideon to scale demand for muon tomography solution while developing other novel advanced detector technologies (including drone-based gravimetry and magnetometry solutions) and data integration methodologies (like AI and joint inversions) to improve the subsurface imaging performance of the Discovery Platform.
What is the global mining landscape?
The World Bank Group estimates that the production of critical minerals must increase by nearly 500%, or 3 billion tons, by 2050 to meet the growing demand for clean energy technologies. That represents an estimated $12 trillion supply gap to be filled. This global scarcity has exposed just how costly and ineffective traditional exploration methods are.
In the last decade alone, the mining industry has invested $200 billion in exploration globally only to find $109 billion of economic deposits. The challenge is that most near-surface deposits have already been discovered and mining companies are forced to search much deeper underground, in more difficult to get to places, with an outdated toolkit.
As the primary exploration method used, drilling is costly, time-consuming, does not provide broad visibility across an area of interest, and leaves damaging environmental impacts.
What were the executive’s thoughts on the funding?
“Our mission is to help accelerate the transition to low-impact mining, which we’re achieving by delivering an unprecedented level of geological certainty in an exploration market that has traditionally been dominated by uncertainty,” says Gary Agnew, Co-Founder and CEO, Ideon.
“Billion-dollar decisions are being made with just 1% of 1% of knowledge of the ore body. Our solution helps clients identify new discoveries, map and characterize ore bodies in-mine to accelerate resource-to-reserve conversion, and to target high-recovery/low-waste deposits to deliver critical minerals faster, more reliably, and sustainably than ever before.”
“Just as the world is at a key inflection point in the shift to clean energy, Ideon is at a key inflection point in our ability to support demand from the global mining industry, which plays a central role in fueling the clean technology supply chain,” Agnew further commented.
“We believe the work we’re doing is vital because there really is no clean energy without mining. This investment – with Playground Global’s partnership – will allow us to deliver more value, more quickly, to the areas of the mining industry that need our solution the most.”
What were the investor’s thoughts on Ideon?
Commenting on Ideon, General Partner at Playground Global, Bruce Leak said, “To build a reliable, sustainable, secure critical mineral supply chain, there must be a radical approach to discovering and mining critical metals and minerals. Ideon has developed a major technological breakthrough that is being used by the world’s largest mining companies.”
“We couldn’t be more excited to partner with a team whose mission is aligned with ours and whose technology is already speeding the transition to a cleaner world,” Bruce further said.
Ideon is also expanding its Vancouver team, hiring across their engineering and software development, go-to-market, and operational teams. For more, please visit ideon.ai/careers.