PolyCera Membranes

The next generation in membrane filtration and separation technology, setting new standards in performance and total cost of ownership

In 2004, UCLA Engineering Professor Eric Hoek attended a seminar presented at the California NanoSystems Institute by noted UCLA Chemistry and Materials Science Professor Richard B. Kaner, who described a novel class of Nobel Prize-winning nano-materials known as electrically conducting nanofibers. These materials were known to have wide chemical and thermal stability and to be water dispersible (i.e., hydrophilic) as well as having been cast into thin films for gas sensing and artificial muscle applications.

Hoek turned to the person sitting next to him, Dr. Asim Ghosh – renowned membrane technology expert from Bhabba Atomic Research Institute in India – and said, “Can you imagine if we could put that material into a membrane?” And Dr. Ghosh literally went slack-jawed and gasped in joy at the thought.

The next year, Kaner and Hoek started a collaboration and in 2012, they formed PolyCera Technologies LLC. In 2013, Water Planet acquired PolyCera, and, within 3 years, achieved its first commercial installation. As of mid-2018, PolyCera Membranes had over 80 installations on 3 continents.

In early 2018, Kairos Ventures led a $9M Series A financing round along with Bluestem Capital and The Wolfen Group into PolyCera, Inc. giving rise to a new, standalone membrane, manufacturing and sales business.