Chemicals firm JNC has injected $4.5m into Northwestern battery spinout SiNode Systems, which has rebranded to Nanograf Technologies as a result.

Nanograf Technologies, a US-based battery materials developer spun out of Northwestern University, secured $4.5m of capital on Monday from chemical products supplier JNC.

Founded in 2013 as SiNode Systems, Nanograf is working on a graphene and silicon-based battery anode which improve circuit flows in lithium-ion energy storage units frequently used for consumer electronics and electric vehicles despite concerns about their stability and effectiveness.

Graphene’s properties have allowed Nanograf to boost the energy density and ionic diffusion of its anodes, meaning batteries based on the technology could recharge faster and offer greater storage.

The funding will allow Nanograf to build its production capabilities and pursue development of other advanced materials. The spinout rebranded to its new name following the investment.

JNC will grant Nanograf access to production capacity and staffing in its home market of Japan, as well as distribution resources, research facilities and more than 50 patents. The corporate has been collaborating with Nanograf on engineering for two years.

Nanograf’s battery anode commercialises the innovations of Harold Kung, the Walter Murphy professor of chemical and biological engineering at Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering.

Nanograf previously raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding from venture capital firm Energy Foundry in 2014, according to TechCrunch.

The business is also backed by cleantech accelerator Clean Energy Trust, though further details could not be ascertained.

— Feature image courtesy of AlexanderAIUS through WikiMedia Commons