And the winner of Startup Battlefield at Disrupt SF 2022 is…Minerva Lithium • TechCrunch


TechCrunch Disrupt 2022 The first personality disorder in three years is in the books. And as always, we finish it off by crowning the winner of the Startup Battlefield.

I started with 20: As seasoned TechCrunch readers know, startups participating in Startup Battlefield have been selected to compete in the event. During the first two days of Disrupt, companies pitched before the jury — multiple groups of venture capitalists and technology leaders — for a chance to win $100,000 and the coveted Battlefield Trophy.

After much deliberation, TechCrunch editors have dug into the judges’ notes and narrowed the list down to Five of the finalists: advanced ionsAnd the AppMapAnd the sensory materialAnd the Minerva Lithium And the swap bots.

They came down before the final jury today, which included Mar Hershenson (Pear VC), Yahoo CEO, Jim Lanzone, Eileen Lee (Cowboy Ventures), TechCrunch Editor-in-Chief Matthew Panzarino, David Tisch (BoxGroup) and Richard Wong (Axl). A victorious startup emerged. Without further ado!

Winner: Minerva Lithium

Minerva Lithium He has produced Nano Mosaic, a co-ordinated polymer framework that looks a bit like black pebbles and extracts important materials from brine in just three days. Minerva says she can extract one metric ton of lithium using just 30,000 gallons of water, and she can do so in three days. Evaporative brine treatment requires evaporating 500,000 gallons of water to reach the same amount of lithium. Only one gram of this absorbent has a surface area equal to that of a football field, which should give you an idea of ​​how little you need to extract a large amount of the mineral. Read our coverage on Minerva Lithium here.

Runner-up: Intropic . Materials

Plastics are great for a lot of things, but they stay around for a very long time. Entropic Big leaps to the rescue are the use of a range of enzymes that can be added to plastics at the beginning of their life cycle, before they are converted into products. The company’s additives have been tested for proof of concept and they want to change the way plastics are made and disposed of. Intropic additives make many of the most commonly used plastics biodegradable in regular commercial compost. Enzymes are added to granules or powders used in the normal course of plastic production. This gives the plastic new and biodegradable capabilities without changing the manufacturing processes used to make plastic products. At the end of the life cycle, when it is time to dispose of the material, the products can be composted into their component parts. Read our coverage on Intropic here.

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