Thanks to an investment from Rhapsody Venture Partners, SAFI-Tech Co-founders (l-r) Dr. Ian Tevis and Professor Martin Thuo are bringing No-Heat SAC305 solder to market. Photo courtesy: SAFI-Tech
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AMES, Iowa (Aug. 21, 2019) – The Iowa State University Startup Factory today announced that cohort one team SAFI-Tech has received an investment from Rhapsody Venture Partners to bring its No-Heat SAC305 product to market.
SAFI-Tech, an affiliate company of the Iowa State University Research Park, produces no-heat solders for use in electronics manufacturing and assembly. SAFI-Tech’s platform and IP were developed at Iowa State University by company co-founders Professor Martin Thuo and Dr. Ian Tevis. Rhapsody’s investment follows SAFI-Tech’s significant developments on a No-Heat SAC305.
SAFI-Tech’s patented platform encapsulates liquid SAC305, the industry standard high temperature alloy, in a nanofilm that prevents the alloy from solidifying when cooled below its melting point.
Carsten Boers, Managing Partner at Rhapsody Venture Partners said in a statement, “When we first encountered SAFI-Tech two years ago, we were skeptical that you could encapsulate a molten metal with a nanofilm at 230°C, and maintain its liquid form as it was cooled to room temperature. The team has made incredible strides in the past year, the technology works and is robust.”
The technology consists of water-balloon-like microparticles of liquid metal solders in a metastable supercooled state. These particles can be mechanically or chemically activated to release the liquid metal, which then flows and solidifies, creating full-metal conductive interconnects.
Tevis says the primary benefit is the metal can be applied without heat. “Removing heat from electronics manufacturing enables smaller, thinner, and flexible designs, currently unachievable with standard materials and processes,” he said. “In addition to enabling fundamental design innovation, heat removal has the potential to decrease energy use, and overall expense in manufacturing millions of goods.”
According to Tevis, Rhapsody’s investment and partnership has come at the right time. “SAFI-Tech is at a major inflection point in our growth. Our next step is initiating a roadshow to form a consortium of partners. Wherever we go, industry veterans are amazed at the capabilities of our technology and the possibilities it enables. The roadshow will help further demonstrate the implications our product could have on electronics manufacturing.”
Roadshow stops include:
- SMTA International, September 24 – 25, 2019 at the Donald Stephens Convention Center, Rosemont, Illinois
- Advanced Design & Manufacturing October 23 – 24, 2019 at the Minneapolis Convention Center, Minnesota.
- Printed Electronics USA 2019, part of the IDTechEx Show, November 20 – 21, 2019 at the Santa Clara Convention Center, California. SAFI-Tech was awarded the Technical Development Materials Award at the 2016 IDTechEx Show.
“We are very excited about meeting with top industry leaders and demonstrating our lead-free soldering technology solution,” Tevis said. “Our goal is to make No-Heat SAC305 the new standard in electronics for conductive interconnects.”
SAFI-Tech produces no-heat solders for use in electronics manufacturing and assembly. SAFI-Tech’s alloy consists of tiny supercooled metal particles that are liquid at room temperature. When activated, the liquid metal flows and solidifies, creating full-metal conductive interconnects. Removing heat from electronics manufacturing enables smaller, thinner, and flexible designs, currently unachievable with standard materials and processes. In addition to enabling fundamental design innovation, the removal of heat creates economic value by reducing manufacturing costs and increasing throughput. Learn more at http://www.safi-tech.com
About Rhapsody Venture Partners
Rhapsody Venture Partners is a venture investor in Cambridge, MA that funds early-stage applied science and engineering companies. Rhapsody’s team works side-by-side with entrepreneurs to engage anchor customers that reduce time-to-commercialization and accelerate growth. Learn more at http://www.rhapsodyvp.com
About ISU Startup Factory
The Iowa State University (ISU) Startup Factory is a 52-week intensive program housed at the ISU Research Park (ISURP). Entrepreneurs in the Startup Factory receive formal training, resources, and access to a network of business mentors, advisors, counselors, and investors in two 26-week blocks: the first a formal curriculum centered on business validation, and the second, customized to their individual business needs. For more information on the ISU Startup Factory program, call 515-294-7444 or visit isustartupfactory.org.
About ISU Research Park
Establish in 1987, The Iowa State University Research Park (ISURP) is a real estate development community closely affiliated with Iowa State University. ISURP assists both established and startup companies in connecting with Iowa State’s vast infrastructure to grow their enterprises; whether through students, research entities, equipment or a multitude of other resources. ISURP is currently home to 93 companies and research centers and 11 affiliates, employing 2,155 and 135 people, respectively, and occupies approximately 800,000 square feet of commercial real estate on 400 acres. For more information on ISURP, call 515.296.4204 or visit isupark.org.
Julie Lelonek, Office of Economic Development and Industry Relations Communications
Iowa State University
Office of Economic Development and Industry Relations
1805 Collaboration Place
Ames, IA 50010