Munich-based OroraTech, a space-based thermal-infrared data intelligence company, announced on Wednesday, that it has raised €15M in a Series A extension round led by Belgium-based Edaphon, a climate impact fund. Previous backers Findus Venture, Ananda Impact Ventures, BayernKapital, ConActivity, APEX Ventures, SpaceTec Capital, and industry experts Ingo Baumann and Clemens Kaiser also participated.
The company also received non-dilutive co-funding from the Free State of Bavaria and the European Space Agency (ESA).
OroraTech says that it will use the funds to reinforce its position as the first and only commercial supplier of space-based thermal-infrared insights by launching a second thermal-infrared camera into orbit in May 2023.
Thomas Grübler, CEO of OroraTech, says, “The new funding will allow us to launch our second camera and accelerate our expansion strategy to different use cases. OroraTech’s fast growth is also appreciated by the investor community – I am thrilled to welcome on-board our new investor – Edaphon. Together with our existing investors and industry experts, we will fast-track OroraTech’s ambition to take the planet’s Earth temperature every 30 minutes and deliver thermal-infrared insights for transparency and better decision-making.”
Brief about OroraTech
Founded in 2018 by Björn Stoffers, Florian Mauracher, Rupert Amann and Thomas Grübler, OroraTech is a thermal-infrared data intelligence company that offers actionable insights for sustainable enterprises.
OroraTech began its network of 100 thermal-infrared cameras to continually monitor the earth’s temperature and present data-based trends with the launch of the first thermal-infrared camera on a nanosatellite in early 2022. Customers from businesses and governments on all six continents use its Wildfire Intelligence Solution.
The company’s thermal-infrared camera provides data in two optical bands: long-wave-infrared (LWIR) and medium-wave-infrared (MWIR). The commercial thermal-infrared camera LWIR is used to record an object’s ambient temperature, which ranges from -30 to +80 °C. Fire, for example, is a separate extreme occurrence that is extremely hot. In order to determine hot objects from low-temperature objects “exceptionally” well, OroraTech additionally employs the MWIR band.
According to the company, the camera doesn’t need cooling because of its design, which reduces expenses significantly and beats IoT sensors on the ground and drones in the air. In order to evaluate data in orbit and provide insights in real-time, the system is also equipped with inter-satellite communication and AI-based onboard processing capabilities. Every 30 minutes, OroraTech will give recurring insights globally via the launch of its 100 cameras in orbit.
Within the last year, the OroraTech team has grown significantly to 80 professionals. The team represents more than 20 nationalities with backgrounds in aerospace engineering, satellite data, and design, optics engineering, software development, business intelligence, and sales and marketing. Headquartered in Munich, Germany, OroraTech expanded its footprint with experts in US, Canada and Luxembourg in 2022.
“Solutions from space for a sustainable Earth”
The target of limiting the increase in global temperatures to 1.5° C has affected climate policy globally since the Paris Agreement of 2015. It was evident at COP27 in Egypt that the globe will not succeed in achieving this aim. Natural calamities and ensuing financial losses are a result of our planet’s fever.
In a statement, OroraTech mentions that wildfires contribute between 17 and 20 per cent of the global carbon emissions each year and are responsible for $10B in insured losses. The prospect of attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for biodiversity, water, health, land life, and climate is significantly impacted by this.
However, important space-based technologies have already started to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions, says OroraTech. Energy production is becoming more effective thanks to Earth observation (EO) technologies. Together with EO data, information from ground sensors is assisting in the improvement of air quality, the health of forests, and the verification of carbon credits for forest owners.
With the vision of “thermal intelligence for a sustainable Earth”, OroraTech released the first uncooled thermal-infrared camera in early 2022 as part of its network of 100 cameras that it plans to have in place by 2026. As a result, it became the first commercial organisation to have a thermal-infrared camera in space and offer practical information to customers throughout the world.
The company’s current product on the market, the Wildfire Intelligence Solution, uses third-party data that is already available for wildfire detection and monitoring, and is utilised by clients globally to safeguard more than 160 million hectares of forest across six continents. The company also has collaborations with data analytics firms, business solution providers, and institutions as a result of the expanding market need for thermal-infrared data insights.