Zero-carbon refrigeration tech startup Barocal bags £1.3m

Barocal founder Image credit Barocal

University of Cambridge spinout Barocal has secured a £1.3m investment to help commercialise its refrigeration technology that’s designed to cut down global carbon emissions.

The latest funding was led by IP Group, which funds companies that are working on solving some of the world’s most notable challenges.

Cambridge Enterprise, the commercialisation arm of the University of Cambridge, also participated in the funding.

Barocal developed its “zero-carbon” refrigeration technology out of research at the University of Cambridge. The Cambridge spinout is working on commercialising barocaloric cooling technology, which is expected to satisfy low-carbon refrigeration requirements.

Instead of using refrigerant gases with high global warming potential, Barocal uses new solid-state temperature changing materials.

These solid-state, organic materials release and absorb heat at different pressures as their volume is changed.

They are also touted as more environmentally friendly as they are easy to recycle when they reach their end of life.

Barocal co-founder, Dr Xavier Moya, said: “As the technology also works in heating applications, the University of Cambridge spinout now plans to explore the potential of its breakthrough for domestic and commercial heating systems – to provide a cost-effective, efficient alternative to expensive air source heat pumps.”

Back in 2019, at the Global Cooling Prize competition, Barocal was the only European finalist. The tech used by Barocal began as a joint project between the Department of Materials and Metallurgy at the University of Cambridge, the Polytechnic University of Catalonia and the University of Barcelona.

The startup has a licence to use technology from Cambridge Enterprise.