Munich, October 2022
Altered Carbon – an innovative startup from the UK – brought to the 13th Innovation World Cup® 2021 their unique solution and won the ST Industrial Innovation Challenge, a special prize of STMicroelectronics to award the most revolutionary solution in the Industrial sector.
Let’s have a throwback chat with the Altered Carbon team and find out more about their sustainable and innovative solution.
1. INTRODUCE YOURSELF! – HOW DID IT ALL START?
Our company started when a group of individuals put their minds and expertise together. After the success of previous ventures, the team was working on a project with graphene after becoming dissatisfied with the limitations of IoT hardware for the future. Like many great scientific discoveries, the team conceived this new technology by accident whilst experimenting with a new battery technology for our IoT products. We noticed the graphene reacting to chemicals in the lab. Being a dynamic and intuitive group we rapidly developed this idea from feasible to working prototypes and so Altered Carbon was born.
The name Altered Carbon describes the process of our sensor element creation, which involves altering graphene, a revolutionary nanomaterial which we modify and therefore alter.
2. WHAT ARE THE KEY MILESTONES YOU HAVE REACHED SO FAR?
- Completed Seed Funding totalling 1,000,000 Euros
- Tested core technology with world-renowned National Physical Laboratory in London – Co-development projects with companies across 5 countries
3. WHAT WERE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES YOU HAVE FACED?
Our biggest challenge as a new company is to change the mindset of old established industries, which are less dynamic and susceptible to change, to adopt new technology which could help them and their industry.
The company has endured most of its life during the global pandemic, raising funding and developing the technology during this time has been extremely challenging, especially with the closure of investment firms and laboratories. Our advice would be to be as dynamic as possible and try to build contingency plans to move an idea or business forward, even if only by making small steps.
4. WHAT IS COMING IN THE NEAR FUTURE?
The next step for Altered Carbon is to transition some of its early state development projects into widespread deployment. Right now companies aren’t always looking to move futuristic projects forward, due to a lack of new technology to actualize ideas. With our technology this can become possible; we need to connect big ideas to practical solutions and our technology can bridge this gap to address some of the world’s biggest challenges such as better utilizing the earth’s resources. Working with ST and partners of the ‘Innovation World cup’ (Navispace) will help us achieve these goals.
5. DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY IN THE INNOVATION WORLD CUP® AND STANDING AMONGST THE WORLD TOP TECHPRENEURS 2022?
Ali Rohafza, CEO and Co-Founder of Altered Carbon, said: “I’m extremely proud of our team for working to win this competition. We are enthusiastic about making the Onlife era a reality by using our sensor technology with Edge-AI. We want it to enable better automation and use of global resources to create sustainability in our industries, from green energy to food security.”
6. YOUR THREE TIPS FOR UP-COMING STARTUPS?
- I believe our idea won because we were able to sell the dream of our innovation conveying our values whilst also showing the bigger picture.
- When designing and executing your pitch, be clear with your idea and message, don’t crowd masses of information onto slides or sentences.
- Make sure you explain how your idea will solve relevant problems such as increasing sustainability.
THANK YOU FOR THE INTERESTING INSIGHTS AND WE SHALL KEEP WATCHING YOUR NEXT BIG STEPS!
Visit Altered Carbon and learn more about their revolutionary new sensor type that provides computer with the ability to sense chemical compounds – effectively it allows devices to detect scent.
Join the 14th Innovation World Cup® for free and pitch your solution at HANNOVER MESSE 2023 – the world’s leading fair in industrial transformation.