FeelIT is an Israeli startup which develops structural sensing technology which can detect changes in any material and analyze the data. FeelIT has raised a $7 million in a Series A round led byGerman automotive parts giant Continental and Henkel Tech Ventures, the corporate venture capital arm of Henkel Adhesive Technologies, who each invested $3 million in the company. The Vasuko Global Tech Fund invested the other $1 million.
Founded in 2017 by Dr. Gadi Konvalina, Dr. Meital Segev-Bar, and Prof. Hossam Haik from the Technion University and based in Haifa, FeelIT Technologies has developed RetroFeel. The company calls this a unique product which uses “revolutionary” nanomaterials-ink printing technology.
“This funding round is a significant step in our global strategic efforts,” said Dr. Konvalina. “We’re excited to have Tier 1 international partners on board who provide us not only with capital, but in addition, contribute their extensive strategic knowledge, experience and market reach.
“Data access and quality are key challenges in any predictive maintenance setup, especially when dealing with legacy infrastructure,” said Nils Berkemeyer, a partner with Continental’s venture capital unit. “Feelit’s state of the art sensing technology seamlessly integrates with any existing manufacturing setup and delivers superior data quality via proprietary non-invasive sensors. We are excited to be an early backer of such a transformative company and see various key applications at Continental, which can thrive in combination with Feelit.”
The nanoink produced by FellIT is printed on a flexible sticker that is attached to the equipment and becomes its “electronic skin.” FeelIT boasts that RetroFeel is glued to equipment in such a way that it senses structural state and material changes in real-time.
For example, the state of pipes in manufacturing lines can be monitored without halting the factory production.
The main difficulty in monitoring any changes or slowly developing damage in factory machinery is the size of such machines. The larger a device and the more complicated it may be then the more difficult it is to see its many components. In order to check them for any damage like corrosion or cavities these machines must be taken apart and taken off line.
Feelit states that it has developed a highly sensitive, flexible, printed nanomaterial sensor that is applicable on static and rotating machinery parts. It says that this sensor can measure strain in ultra-high resolution, as well as other parameters such as temperature, vibration, and pressure. Based on an industrial IoT platform for real-time remote sensing of structural changes in mechanical assets, the system serves as an ‘electronic skin’ that alerts on critical structural and operational anomalies in advance.