Fusion startup ExoFusion today announced that it raised a seed round of an undisclosed amount. The company launched last year and is offering intellectual property and licensing of technology to other ventures that are trying to commercialize fusion power.
The team: The three co-founders — Michael Kotschenreuther, chief scientist; Swadesh Mahajan, senior scientific advisor; and David Hatch, chief technologist — are fusion physics professors at the University of Texas.
Co-founder and CEO Romi Mahajan is based in Bellevue, Wash., and has held leadership and advisory roles for multiple startups. He also worked as a marketing director for Microsoft in the 2000s. He is the son of Swadesh Mahajan.
The goal: Companies around the globe are racing to build commercially viable systems for generating power from fusion, which is the ultra hot reaction that fuels the sun. The Pacific Northwest is a fusion hub, with four startups in pursuit of fusion energy, dubbed the “holy grail” of clean power.
Tech innovation: Kotschenreuther and Mahajan developed a technology called the Super X Divertor, which they described in a 2010 scientific article as a new magnetic geometry that can help a fusion device exhaust heat and improve its performance. More recently, the Super X Divertor technology was applied to a fusion project in the United Kingdom, where it demonstrated a 10-fold heat reduction.
Notable news: Kotschenreuther and colleagues made headlines in 1996 for challenging some of the science behind the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor, or I.T.E.R., a multibillion-dollar fusion demonstration project being built in France.