Matteco, a newly established Spanish company, has emerged as a key player specializing in nanotechnology. The company’s primary focus revolves around the research and development of advanced materials crucial for decarbonization efforts. During the European Hydrogen Week in Brussels, Matteco unveiled its groundbreaking innovation—a new generation of catalysts and electrodes, fundamental elements for green hydrogen production through electrolysis.
Matteco, a spin-off of the University of Valencia, has its roots in a decade of collaborative efforts by a team of multidisciplinary researchers. The impetus for its creation comes from Zubi Labs, a part of the Zubi Group—an ‘impact company builder’ dedicated to fostering solutions for social and environmental challenges. Zubi Group stands as a prominent member of Cleantech for Iberia, a European alliance promoting clean technologies in the Iberian Peninsula, endorsed by Cleantech Group and Breakthrough Energy, an initiative spearheaded by Bill Gates to decarbonize the planet.
Iker Marcaide, CEO of Zubi Group, assumes the role of CEO and co-founder of Matteco. The other co-founder is Gonzalo Abellán, principal investigator and leader of the 2D-Chem materials research group at the Institute of Molecular Science (ICMol). Abellán is also a co-inventor of the patented technology.
Matteco positions green hydrogen as a “crucial energy vector” essential for the decarbonization of significant industries, including steel, chemistry, and the mobility and long-distance transport sectors. The company asserts that green hydrogen could serve as a cornerstone for achieving the ‘net zero’ goal by 2050.
Matteco’s innovative technology places a particular emphasis on alkaline electrolysis (AWE) and the novel anion exchange membrane electrolysis (AEM). The company’s new generation materials are designed to substantially reduce energy consumption by up to 30% and enhance the efficiency of electrolyzers. This improvement aims to increase production, operate at higher current densities, and ensure long-term durability—a critical factor for transitioning toward clean and versatile energy.
Matteco highlights the importance of achieving ambitious objectives in installing electrolysis capacity, emphasizing the necessity of 550 GW, as stated by the International Energy Agency, to meet the ‘net zero’ objective by 2050. However, the current global installed capacity stands at a mere 0.7 GW.
To facilitate its operations, Matteco has acquired 10,000 square meters of facilities in Paterna, Valencia. The factory, expected to open in the second quarter of 2024, will produce powder catalysts and electrodes with an initial installed capacity of 1 GW. With a committed investment of 15 million euros until 2025, Matteco envisions a team of 100 employees within the next two years.
Matteco’s future plans include active participation in public-private collaboration projects, supporting joint research and technological advancements in green hydrogen and other clean energy production.