Fenix Advanced Materials, a clean technology company located in Trail, has received more than $1.5 million to kickstart its new cadmium-zinc-tellurium (CZT) raw materials product lines.
This will expand its current 6N5+ (>99.99995%) product line: indium, antimony, and tin used in solar photovoltaics, advanced infrared technologies, and superconductors.
Community Futures of Greater Trail, the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP), and Columbia Basin Trust are the major funders that will allow Fenix to build up their applied research efforts, staffing and infrastructure on ultra-high metals purification and advanced manufacturing.
Fenix will upscale its applied research to develop and produce new ultra-high purity metals to grow CZT crystals. As the newest and coolest semiconductor, its applications range from radiation detection and mapping, nuclear medical imaging, homeland security, and astrophysics.
“CZT digitizes conventional imaging technology by directly converting gamma- and x-rays to electronic signals. Further, it gives higher energy and spatial resolutions while operating at room temperature,” explains Dan Manaig, Director of Research and Innovation of Fenix.
“Fenix is committed to producing these new ultra-high purity metals (cadmium, zinc, and tellurium) used to grow the CZT crystals,” emphasizes Don Freschi, Fenix CEO.
“These financial investments will ramp up our technological, innovation and production capacity, which in turn increases our global competitiveness. We believe this will bring direct positive economic impact to our rural region and are extremely grateful for all the support.”
As a proud member of Metal Tech Alley, Fenix has expanded its pursuit towards a circular economy of raw materials globally. It has inked international partnerships with the Centre for Separation Technology (Finland), Mektory-Taltech (Estonia), and Critical Raw Material Alliance (Belgium) – the pioneer in raw materials criticality in Europe.
“Such strategic partnerships will solidify our position in the global arena. Our clean technology company produces top-quality, ultra-pure metals tagged as critical raw materials in both the USA and Europe: securing and diversifying the supply chain is a must,” Freschi explains. “With that, we are looking at potential recycling projects abroad: Center for Materials for Electronics Technology in India and the University of the Philippines-Diliman in the Philippines.”
Further cementing its overall vision for the region, Fenix partnered with the University of British Columbia – Okanagan, Retriev Technologies, Teck Metals, Eagle Graphite, and Deer Horn Capital through a MITACS Acceleration Grant and Rural Dividend Fund to spearhead next-generation battery research on solid-state lithium-tellurium (LiTe) batteries. Discussions with international LiTe battery partners, such as the National Cheng Kung University (Taiwan) and Flemish Institute for Technological Research (Belgium), are underway.