Stellarator fusion company Type One Energy raises $29m in first financing

Jenny Folley,expert and founder of @WORKSPACES
Christofer Mowry, Chief Executive Officer at Type One Energy

Type One Energy has announced the close of an over-subscribed $29 million financing round. This effort launches the company’s ambitious, partner-rich and capital-efficient FusionDirect program to commercialize its stellarator fusion technology. Additionally, Type One Energy’s technical foundations also provide a powerful springboard to achieve its mission.

Breakthrough Energy Ventures (BEV), TDK Ventures and Doral Energy Tech Ventures co-led the round with additional cleantech investment from Darco, the Grantham Foundation, MILFAM, Orbia Ventures, Shorewind Capital, TRIREC, VAHOCA and others. The company’s unique FusionDirect commercialization program takes advantage of recent important breakthroughs to pursue a lowest-risk, shortest-schedule pathway to fusion energy.

What is the market offering of Type One Energy?

Founded by several of the world’s leading stellarator experts, Type One Energy also brings concentrated experience from renowned fusion science institutions, including the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the U.S., the Max Planck Institute for Plasma Physics in Germany and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for its work on advanced magnet tech.

The stellarator is a fusion tech distinguished by stable and steady-state operations. Related to tokamaks, stellarators do not, however, require massive circulating electric currents to assist in creating the magnetic fields used to confine their fusion plasma. This makes stellarator technology less physically complex and easier to translate into a practical fusion power plant.

Improvements in stellarator fusion performance and plasma science work together with technical innovations in high-temperature superconducting (HTS) magnet technology and advanced manufacturing to spark Type One Energy’s launch of FusionDirect. Type One’s commercialization program is being executed through a set of partnerships with leading fusion science and technology research institutions, universities and industrial companies.

What is the leadership of Type One Energy?

These partnerships reflect the collaborative relationships which the company’s industry-recognized technical leaders bring to Type One Energy. This technical leadership team includes Chief Technology Officer Dr. Thomas Sunn Pedersen, Chief Science Officer Dr. John Canik, Chief Engineer Dr. David Anderson, and Head of Stellarator Plasma Science Dr. Chris Hegna.

With this announcement, the company will onboard former Breakthrough Energy Ventures’ (BEV) Senior Advisor on Fusion, Christofer Mowry, to serve as Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

“Type One Energy represents a special opportunity. This team’s knowledge and credibility gives Type One the unique ability to effectively integrate recent global advances in stellarator-relevant technology and to deliver a fusion power plant without another costly, large-scale, science validation machine,” commented Type One Energy Group CEO Christofer Mowry.

Previously, Mowry held the CEO position at General Fusion, where he scaled up the company and raised over $200m in private investment and government support from three countries.

What were the investors’ thoughts on Type One Energy?

Commenting on FusionDirect, Carmichael Roberts, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, said, “Fusion is the ultimate energy source, and its successful commercialization will be a huge leap towards achieving clean and abundant energy for everyone. Advances in stellarator science, including Type One Energy’s ability to execute a stellarator development project, provide the basis for a very promising path to practical fusion on the grid in the coming decades.”

“The science basis for stellarators has taken major leaps recently. Through a combination of experimental demonstrations and the use of high-performance computing, the stage is set for the development of power plant scale machines. We look forward to collaborating with Type One Energy to realize the advantages of HTS high-field fusion magnets to their stellarator tech,” said Dennis Whyte, Director of MIT’s Plasma Science and Fusion Center.

“The world will need a source of high energy density low-carbon power in the coming decades to achieve energy transition and decarbonization. Among several startups that we have evaluated, Type One Energy is on a credible accelerated trajectory to commercialize a steady-state baseload fusion power plant. TDK Ventures is excited to back this highly accomplished leadership team,” said Tina Tosukhowong, Investment Director, TDK Ventures.