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Design Biotic Paths to Capture and Store CO2

BY LAUNCHING NEW CLIMATE VENTURES IN PARTNERSHIP WITH
ABOUT DSV

Deep Science Ventures is creating a future in which both humans and the planet can thrive.

We use our unique venture creation process to create, spin-out and invest into science companies, combining available scientific knowledge and founder-type scientists into high-impact ventures.

We operate in 4 sectors: Pharmaceuticals, Energy, Agriculture and Computation, tackling the challenges defining those areas by taking a first principles approach and partnering with leading institutions.

 

The Challenge

The most important CO2 drawdown mechanism today with a net drawdown capacity of around 9.5 Gt/yr CO2 is photosynthesis, where CO2 is converted to biomass. On average 30% of anthropogenic CO2 emissions are taken up by the biosphere and up to 80% of the aboveground carbon in terrestrial communities and about a third of belowground carbon are contained within forests. The carbon reservoir potential in the biosphere is however strongly impacted by anthropogenic activities and land use change and permanence of carbon storage in the biosphere is highly variable and difficult to track due to respiration, decomposition or combustion. Thus, translating learnings from biotic carbon sequestration mechanisms into practical and economic solutions will be an important lever to increase the carbon reservoirs on land and in the ocean as well as in contributing to a circular carbon economy. Ecosystem restoration has for example a net emissions reduction potential of 2.9 GT CO2e/yr but related initiatives are highly underfunded. If CO2 is converted to soil carbon or biochar the carbon can be locked away for centuries, but the production of biochar is still high in energy demand. CO2 fermentation seems to be a cornerstone for a circular carbon economy to produce valuable components directly from CO2 but still depends on highly purified CO2 streams.

 

Our take on building new ventures in this space

To unlock the full potential of biotic paths to capture and store CO2 we believe it will be essential to identify the most impactful approaches that will help us to channel the atmospheric CO2 into non-atmospheric, long lasting sinks such as the soil in terrestrial or coastal regions. Therefore we challenge you to bring in ideas that will help to accelerate photosynthetic rate of phototrophs, increase soil carbon formation, reduce cost of marine plant cultivation or increase efficiency of CO2 fermentation

 

Join us to build these ventures

You’ll join DSV as a Founding Analyst (fixed contract, full-time) and work with us for 9-12 months to further refine the approaches. At the end of the 9-12 month period you will have helped to design and spin-out one or more ventures, and will become a full-time Founder of one of them.

Taking up a Founding Analyst (FA) role at DSV differs quite significantly from the entrepreneur in residence (EIR) role in other funds or venture studios. Instead of scouting for existing technologies which might overcome a specific challenge, an FA starts with identifying the areas where there is neglect or repeated failure yet potential solutions exist if considered from a different perspective, mapping the limitations to existing approaches at the specific and macro-level and considering the constraints of the broader ecosystem (capital, expertise, IP, knowledge, competition). You will start to build a company, iteratively determining the optimal solution for the problem.

 

Our offer

We provide a monthly salary (at a pre-seed stage startup level) to bridge the gap between developing the concept and getting it to an investable company stage. You and your Co-Founder(s) will own 80% of the new venture at inception and the pre-seed investment capital is already secured from both DSV and Grantham.

 

Our impact

In the past 2 years, we have built and invested in 6 brand new companies in the energy sector across high performance materials, energy storage, green hydrogen production and carbon capture. In doing this, we have partnered with, and our companies have received funding from, the world’s leading climate-focused institutions and investors.

Previous Founding Analysts: Gael’s journey

Gael joined DSV with no specific ideas, IP or team members. He left having built both a direct air capture company Mission Zero and a green hydrogen company Supercritical Solutions.

He had the option to join either team as a co-founder, and chose to work full time with Mission Zero as it better suited his skillset. Mission Zero is developing a radical new form of bio-inspired direct air capture. 16 months after incorporation they have:

Secured a carbon removal pre-purchase agreement with Stripe worth up to $1.5m;
Raised £250k in pre-seed and currently closing a oversubscribed seed round with top-tier climate investors;
Had their DAC pilot development funded by Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) through its inaugural DAC & GGR competition;
Participated in the Net Zero Technology centre’s (NZTC) Tech X accelerator program, winning the Equinor award;
Secured a number of commercial agreements worth multimillions including the UK’s largest offtaker of CO2;

Won an XPrize (!) for Project Hajar, a collaboration with 44.01 to build a DAC and mineralisation facility in Oman.

 

Who should apply

We’re after deep technical expertise in biogeochemistry or microbial ecology, ideally related to enhanced weathering, soil carbon formation and plant-microorganism interactions

OR 

Biotechnology, ideally related to CO2 fermentation, accelerated biomass cultivation and reactor design.

Additional interests: Ecosystem function, environmental sensing, regenerative soil management, plant biotechnology.

Needless to say that a strong desire to build a company to make a huge positive impact towards the net zero energy transition is a must, you cannot wait to get started!

ABOUT DSV

Deep Science Ventures is creating a future in which both humans and the planet can thrive.

We use our unique venture creation process to create, spin-out and invest into science companies, combining available scientific knowledge and founder-type scientists into high-impact ventures.

We operate in 4 sectors: Pharmaceuticals, Energy, Agriculture and Computation, tackling the challenges defining those areas by taking a first principles approach and partnering with leading institutions.

 

The Challenge

The most important CO2 drawdown mechanism today with a net drawdown capacity of around 9.5 Gt/yr CO2 is photosynthesis, where CO2 is converted to biomass. On average 30% of anthropogenic CO2 emissions are taken up by the biosphere and up to 80% of the aboveground carbon in terrestrial communities and about a third of belowground carbon are contained within forests. The carbon reservoir potential in the biosphere is however strongly impacted by anthropogenic activities and land use change and permanence of carbon storage in the biosphere is highly variable and difficult to track due to respiration, decomposition or combustion. Thus, translating learnings from biotic carbon sequestration mechanisms into practical and economic solutions will be an important lever to increase the carbon reservoirs on land and in the ocean as well as in contributing to a circular carbon economy. Ecosystem restoration has for example a net emissions reduction potential of 2.9 GT CO2e/yr but related initiatives are highly underfunded. If CO2 is converted to soil carbon or biochar the carbon can be locked away for centuries, but the production of biochar is still high in energy demand. CO2 fermentation seems to be a cornerstone for a circular carbon economy to produce valuable components directly from CO2 but still depends on highly purified CO2 streams.

 

Our take on building new ventures in this space

To unlock the full potential of biotic paths to capture and store CO2 we believe it will be essential to identify the most impactful approaches that will help us to channel the atmospheric CO2 into non-atmospheric, long lasting sinks such as the soil in terrestrial or coastal regions. Therefore we challenge you to bring in ideas that will help to accelerate photosynthetic rate of phototrophs, increase soil carbon formation, reduce cost of marine plant cultivation or increase efficiency of CO2 fermentation

 

Join us to build these ventures

You’ll join DSV as a Founding Analyst (fixed contract, full-time) and work with us for 9-12 months to further refine the approaches. At the end of the 9-12 month period you will have helped to design and spin-out one or more ventures, and will become a full-time Founder of one of them.

Taking up a Founding Analyst (FA) role at DSV differs quite significantly from the entrepreneur in residence (EIR) role in other funds or venture studios. Instead of scouting for existing technologies which might overcome a specific challenge, an FA starts with identifying the areas where there is neglect or repeated failure yet potential solutions exist if considered from a different perspective, mapping the limitations to existing approaches at the specific and macro-level and considering the constraints of the broader ecosystem (capital, expertise, IP, knowledge, competition). You will start to build a company, iteratively determining the optimal solution for the problem.

 

Our offer

We provide a monthly salary (at a pre-seed stage startup level) to bridge the gap between developing the concept and getting it to an investable company stage. You and your Co-Founder(s) will own 80% of the new venture at inception and the pre-seed investment capital is already secured from both DSV and Grantham.

 

Our impact

In the past 2 years, we have built and invested in 6 brand new companies in the energy sector across high performance materials, energy storage, green hydrogen production and carbon capture. In doing this, we have partnered with, and our companies have received funding from, the world’s leading climate-focused institutions and investors.

Previous Founding Analysts: Gael’s journey

Gael joined DSV with no specific ideas, IP or team members. He left having built both a direct air capture company Mission Zero and a green hydrogen company Supercritical Solutions.

He had the option to join either team as a co-founder, and chose to work full time with Mission Zero as it better suited his skillset. Mission Zero is developing a radical new form of bio-inspired direct air capture. 16 months after incorporation they have:

Secured a carbon removal pre-purchase agreement with Stripe worth up to $1.5m;
Raised £250k in pre-seed and currently closing a oversubscribed seed round with top-tier climate investors;
Had their DAC pilot development funded by Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) through its inaugural DAC & GGR competition;
Participated in the Net Zero Technology centre’s (NZTC) Tech X accelerator program, winning the Equinor award;
Secured a number of commercial agreements worth multimillions including the UK’s largest offtaker of CO2;

Won an XPrize (!) for Project Hajar, a collaboration with 44.01 to build a DAC and mineralisation facility in Oman.

 

Who should apply

We’re after deep technical expertise in biogeochemistry or microbial ecology, ideally related to enhanced weathering, soil carbon formation and plant-microorganism interactions

OR 

Biotechnology, ideally related to CO2 fermentation, accelerated biomass cultivation and reactor design.

Additional interests: Ecosystem function, environmental sensing, regenerative soil management, plant biotechnology.

Needless to say that a strong desire to build a company to make a huge positive impact towards the net zero energy transition is a must, you cannot wait to get started!

Interviews ongoing for a full-time start asap

Interviews ongoing for a full-time start asap