Top European nuclear energy startups that you should know in 2024

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The world is shifting to green energy sources to reduce carbon emissions and halt climate risks. Thus, developing new technologies for these energy sources is important to accelerate the transition. 

Many European startups developing nuclear technology have entered the market. Old nuclear technology has many shortcomings that these startups see as a chance to create innovative approaches. The nuclear startup sector has grown substantially these past few years, backed by numerous investments and an army of scientists and engineers.

Europe is where many startups are thriving, as it has an excellent growth environment. Here is a list of thriving nuclear startups to anticipate in 2024.

Thorizon

Founder(s): Sander de Groot and Lucas Pool

Year founded: 2018

Hiring: Yes, check job opportunities here

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The Amsterdam-based nuclear energy startup Thorizon is developing a reactor that runs on molten salt. The company claims its technology is safe, smart, and circular and does not waste energy. The reactor will supply reliable power to 250.000 households or provide high-temperature, clean steam to industry. 

Thorizon has partnered with various companies, including Orano, CEA, Oakridge, and Differ, to develop a sustainable nuclear facility.

This March, the Dutch company received a €10 million grant from the French government. Thorizon was selected for inclusion in France’s nuclear innovation programme, French 2030.

Blykalla

Founder(s): Janne Wallenius and Peter Szakalos

Year founded: 2013

Hiring: Yes, check job opportunities here

Bykalla is a Swedish nuclear power company founded in 2013. The company focuses on developing small modular lead-cooled reactors to provide clean energy. The reactors use corrosion-tolerant steel alloys, which are claimed to allow a more cost-effective and faster deployment than their traditional counterparts. 

The startup aims to license its nuclear technology in Sweden and plans to deliver its nuclear reactors globally, with Southeast Asia as its primary target market. 

In a funding round this April, Bykalla secured a €6.87 million investment. Norrsken Launcher and Nucleation Capital led the round.

Transmutex

Founder(s): Federico Carminati, Jean-Pierre Revol, and Franklin Servan-Schreiber

Year founded: 2019

Hiring: No

The Swiss startup Transmutex offers lower-cost, safer, and intrinsically non-proliferate nuclear energy. The company’s technology pairs a particle accelerator with a subcritical fuel assembly. This new technology can halt the nuclear reaction in just two milliseconds, faster than traditional ones. 

Most nuclear reactors use uranium, which is unsustainable due to shortages and waste management challenges. Transmutex collaborated with top-tier governmental institutions to expedite a pioneering facility that addresses these challenges. 

The Swiss company secured a €20.2 million investment in a Series A2 round this February. The investors include One Ventures, HCVC, AlleyCorp, House of Ventures, and Tiny Supercomputer Investment Co.

Marvel Fusion 

Founder(s): Karl Georg Schlesinger and Pasha Shabalin

Year founded: 2019

Hiring: Yes, check job opportunities here

Marvel Fusion is a provider of quantum-enhanced and laser-induced clean fusion energy solutions. The German startup aims to offer laser-driven fusion technology that combines intensity and repetition rates to produce energy.

The company uses indirect laser fusion to convert laser energy into X-rays that probe into the fuel source capsule. Marvel Fusion also plans to use hydrogen-boron 11 as a fuel source to produce less waste than the common deuterium-tritium fuel.

Its technology is still in the early stages of development, specifically computer simulation. The goal is to have a physics facility within five years and a prototype power plant within a decade. 

Seaborg Technologies

Founder(s): Andreas Viggand, Ask Emil Jensen, Eirik Eide Pettersen, Esben Klinkby, Navid Samandari, and Troels Schönfeldt

Year founded: 2014

Hiring: Yes, check job opportunities here

Denmark-based startup Seaborg Technologies was founded by a team of physicists. Its mission is to curb carbon emissions and end energy poverty. 

The company develops molten-star reactors to provide nuclear power solutions, citing their safety profile and technical potential. Its main focus for product development is material corrosion control and extending the reactor’s operational life to reach commercialisation.

Copenhagen Atomics

Founder(s): Thomas Pedersen, Aslak Stubsgaard, Peter Szabo, Thomas Steenberg, Olga Schweitzer, and Yulia Hartman-Haigh

Year founded: 2014

Hiring: Yes, check job opportunities here

Copenhagen Atomics was founded in Denmark by scientists and engineers from the Technical University of Denmark. The company is developing thorium-based molten salt reactors that are safer and more efficient than conventional reactors.

It manufactures products such as portable pumped molten salt loops, salt ingots, check valves, and U-clamps. The Danish company claims to be the only supplier of commercial molten test loops for nuclear reactor components and technologies. 

The startup aims to commercialise its reactors before 2030. 

Newcleo

Founder(s): Stefano Buono

Year founded: 2021

Hiring: Yes, check job opportunities here

The UK-based startup Newcleo is one of the best nuclear companies in Europe. It offers everything from reactor design to MOX fuel manufacturing. Since its founding in 2021, the company has grown rapidly and has about 700 employees.

One of its products is a lead-cooled reactor, submitted to the UK government this April as the first of its kind for a decade, Newcleo is Europe’s only nuclear unicorn and is on a mission to raise €1 billion in equity this year.

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