March 7, 2007
Austin-based NanoCoolers has gotten $3 million from the Texas Emerging Technology Fund. NanoCoolers will use the funding to commercialize its “refrigerator on a chip” technology. NanoCoolers, which has since been in stealth mode, is developing a cooling system that will improve efficiency while reducing heat 10 times more than traditional thermoelectric coolers. “NanoCoolers’ award provides an example of how the Emerging Technology Fund can work well with Central Texas businesses to assure we are creating the right types of jobs for the region,” says Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin. Founded in 2002, NanoCoolers has 16 employees and will add a handful more as it nears its product release date. NanoCoolers declines to comment on when it will release its product. Gary Baum, vice president of marketing and business development, says the funding will enable NanoCoolers to develop the product enough so that it can sample it out to partners and begin production. “It’s certainly a vote of confidence in our business model and product line,” Baum says. Privately held NanoCoolers is funded by Austin Ventures and Draper Fisher Jurvetson. The startup was selected by the CenTex Regional Center for Innovation and Commercialization, or RCIC, after an extensive application process based on factors such as analyses of the market, financial opportunity, management team and economic impact to Texas. CenTex RCIC serves a 15-county region and acts as the operational platform for submitting and managing project applications for state funding. The CenTex RCIC oversees Travis, Hays, Williamson, Caldwell, Bastrop, Lee, Fayetteville, Milam, Burnet, Bell, Falls, Lampasas, Mills, Hamilton and Coryell counties.