Niron Magnetics, company that rose from Professor Jian-Ping Wang's research, awarded $17.5M DOE grant

Niron Magnetics, a local startup company based on the research of ECE faculty Professor Jian-Ping Wang has been awarded $17.5 million by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to support the scaling up of its sustainable permanent magnets prototypes. The grant is part of the DOE Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) Seeding Critical Advances for Leading Energy technologies with Untapped Potential (SCALEUP) program. 

The program will fund eight clean energy technology projects that will lower emissions, reduce dependence on imports of critical materials, and ensure that the United States maintains its standing as a "global leader of research and innovation."

Niron Magnetics using a proprietary manufacturing process has developed Clean Earth Magnet materials that “possess inherently higher magnetization and can be produced at a lower cost.” Currently, the rare-earth materials magnets used for high-performance applications are the product of labor-intensive and environmentally damaging extraction and manufacturing processes. Besides, raw material costs are unstable and susceptible to fluctuations in the geopolitical landscape. Niron uses commonly found materials (iron and nitrogen) that can also be sourced sustainably, and combined with its manufacturing process, an outcome of nanomaterial engineering, it will produce low cost high performance magnets. 

Niron Magnetics was founded in 2014 and stems from the research of Distinguished McKnight University Professor and the Robert F. Hartmann Chair ​​​​Jian-Ping Wang. He and his team developed the world’s first iron nitride. Wang holds 65 patents and was inducted into the National Academy of Inventors earlier this year. He currently serves as Niron’s Chief Scientific Officer. 

Read more about Niron’s magnet technology and the impact of the DOE grant

Read the DOE press release on SCALUP awardees