SunDensity is Clean Energy Ventures’ fourth investment since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March of 2020. We’re dedicated to continuing to make investments in promising climate tech startups and believe pushing this industry forward is critical in our drive to help address climate change.
SunDensity provides an excellent opportunity for a step-change in solar panel efficiency that can work in coordination with other solar innovations such as improvements to silicon wafer manufacturing and new anti-reflection coatings.
SunDensity, the developer of the Photonic Smart Coating (PSC™) technology that increases solar power output and has additional applications in consumer electronics and architectural glass, today announced the closing of $2.5 million in initial financing led by Clean Energy Ventures, a venture capital firm funding early-stage climate-tech innovations. Luminate, Rochester Angel Network (RAN), LaunchNY, and Clean Energy Venture Group also participated in the round.
“As ubiquitous as solar energy is today, the sector has seen incremental improvements over the past two decades. SunDensity’s breakthrough technology brings a critical step-function increase in solar panel efficiency, further accelerating our transition to clean, renewable energy,” said Temple Fennell, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Clean Energy Ventures. “We are proud to invest in promising early-stage startups, such as SunDensity, that can be major enablers of the energy transition and have the potential to prevent more than 2.5 gigatons of greenhouse gas emissions between now and 2050.”
SunDensity is the first company to focus on improving the photonics of solar modules. Its Photonic Smart Coating technology is designed to work with any solar module and complement existing anti-reflective coating technologies for a wide range of glass and materials manufacturers. The technology can also reduce energy consumption and improve the performance of consumer electronics displays and architectural glass in buildings.
SunDensity’s Photonic Smart Coating converts blue light that cannot be absorbed by solar panels into red light that can be readily converted into electricity. Applied underneath the glass in solar panels, the photonic coating has the potential to increase panel efficiency, enabling a 20 percent increase in power output for even the most efficient solar cells. SunDensity’s Photonic Smart Coating traps and transforms light through a special process, allowing manufacturers to apply this solar coating with widely available magnetron sputtering tools used throughout the architectural glass industry.
“Our Photonic Smart Coating technology is the only technology of its kind that focuses on disrupting the photonic side of solar modules, dramatically increasing the efficiency and decreasing the cost per watt of solar panels,” said Nish Sonwalkar (Sc. D. MIT), Founder of SunDensity and inventor of the PSC™ technology. “With this support from Clean Energy Ventures, whose knowledge of this space and vast energy network will help us scale this technology quickly, SunDensity will become an accelerant to renewable energy adoption globally.”
SunDensity was recently selected as the winner of the Luminate NY competition, the world’s largest accelerator for optics, photonics, and imaging-enabled technology startups. Chosen as the “Company of the Year,” SunDensity secured a $1 million investment from the Empire State Development’s Initiative. The new funding will support the expansion of the SunDensity team, jumpstart its production, and accelerate partnerships with key industry players.