Manz AG (Reutlingen, Germany), an engineering company focused on energy distribution and storage has taken a minority stake in MetOx Technologies Inc. (Houston, Texas), a maker of superconductive wires.
Manz said that MetOx is developing technology that will be key for energy distribution. Part of that technology offering is a proprietary vacuum coating technology central to industrial-scale production of superconductors.
The investment amount is in the low single-digit million-dollar range, Manz said.
Demand for electricity, particularly for the charging of electric vehicles, is set to push the conventional electricity supply network to its performance limit. Providing electromobility in metropolitan regions will be particularly difficult but could be met by the adoption of superconductor wiring, Manz said.
To this end, Manz is contributing its expertise in vacuum coating technology acquired in the solar sector as well as competencies from roll-to-roll, laser and automation technology.
MetOx, founded in 2002, is a specialist in the manufacture of high-temperature superconductor tapes. Addressable markets for the technology include replacement of copper-based cables in metropolitan power supply, magnets for nuclear fusion power generation, and medical technology.
“We are convinced that MetOx’s technology will play an important role in the global energy transition, as well as in the expansion of the charging infrastructure in the course of the growth of electric mobility,” said Martin Drasch, CEO of Manz, in a statement. “Therefore, we are looking forward to contributing our know-how, for example in vacuum coating technology, and to developing and building industrial-scale production facilities together with MetOx.”
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