Startup Atom Power Lands $17.8M in Series B FundingJune 20, 2020 by Shannon Cuthrell
Atom Power, a fast-growing startup based in Charlotte, North Carolina, recently closed on a $17.75 million Series B funding round to commercialize its digital circuit breaker technology in the e-mobility and EV-charging market.
Atom Power’s silicon carbide-based digital circuit breaker (called the Atom Switch) distributes power faster than traditional mechanical switches, with less potential safety issues. Mechanical circuit breakers are prone to explosions caused by short-circuits, but silicon carbide transistors can process at higher temperatures and speeds at ease, preventing dangerous safety hazards.
Atom Power’s solid-state circuit breaker. (Source: Atom Power, via GlobeNewswire)
The $17.8 million Series B round includes Tesla and SpaceX backer Valor Equity Partners, ABB’s VC arm ABB Technology Ventures, which also invested in Atom Power’s Series A round, industrial automation software provider Rockwell Automation and Boston private equity firm Atreides Management. A Securities and Exchange Commission filing dated June 2 indicates that eight investors were included in the offering.
Atom Power boasts that its Atom Switch was the first-ever digital circuit breaker on the market. In May 2019, the technology was the first of its kind to be approved and listed by Underwriters Laboratories, a safety certification organization.
At scale, the Atom Switch can be used in energy-efficiency/distribution systems and smart grids. In the Series B funding announcement, Atom Power said that it plans to apply the technology to the advanced e-mobility market, which includes electric vehicle charging systems.
In addition to its Atom Switch product, the company also markets its corresponding distribution panels and a software platform to streamline the system. Patents for the Atom Switch solid-state circuit breaker and the Atom operating system platform were both issued earlier this year by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
In 2017, the company attracted several investors for a $3 million Series A round, just three years after its founding in 2014. The investors included Siemens, ABB and Eaton, three of the largest circuit breaker manufacturers in the world.
In a news release announcing the Series B funding earlier this month, Atom Power CEO Ryan Kennedy stated that the electrical infrastructure remains largely analog, which limits the adoption of renewable energy and electric vehicle technology.
“We need technology that gives us digital control over when and how we use power,” he adds. “Last year, we made huge strides when we introduced the first solid-state circuit breaker to market, and we’re thrilled to continue building a future where energy is faster, safer, and more reliable than ever.”