Wageningen start-up wins 4TU Impact Challenge with ice-cold CO2 capture

Published on
November 17, 2022

The start-up CryoCOP from Wageningen University & Research has won the fourth edition of the 4TU Impact Challengen. Using a revolutionary cryogenic technology, the start-up founders want to capture CO2 at a low price. This way, they are hoping to contribute to the fight against climate change.

CryoCOP was founded in 2021 by Coen van den Brand, Kiran Abraham Jacob, James Tonny Manalal and Max Kersten, students at WUR, TU Delft and TU Eindhoven. In that same year, they won the 4TU Carbon Removal Student Challenge. The young entrepreneurs want to change the world by capturing CO2 with a process that involves using very low temperatures. This cryogenic technology should be available at a ‘disruptively low price’. The technology will eventually pay for itself by selling by-products such as energy, oxygen and nitrogen.

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The jury, composed of experts in the field of startup development, was impressed by CryoCOP's innovative technology: ‘Their idea has the potential to become a breakthrough technology turning carbon waste into circular products. They have a unique proposition bringing value to waste in the field of carbon capture.’ Prince Constantijn van Oranje, Special Envoy for TechLeap, attended the final and the award ceremony.

The 4TU Impact Challenge is an initiative by the four Dutch technical universities. It offers the brightest minds of these universities a platform for entrepreneurship. In the final, eight teams (two from each technical university) had a chance to win the contest. The other team from Wageningen was SenseWURk, which developed a rapid test to check for sepsis. For the second year in a row, the final took place in Helsinki, on the eve of Slush 2022, the biggest start-up event in the world.