Evaptainers decouples refrigeration from electricity to help rural farms and families

Snowflakes Some 1.4 billion people lack access to electricity worldwide today, most in rural areas across Southeast Asia, China, India and Sub-Saharan Africa. While others are focused on wiring up those places and developing new energy sources, a startup called Evaptainers has created a kind of refrigerator that requires no electricity, but instead runs on water. Read More

Impossible Foods CEO Pat Brown says VCs need to ask harder scientific questions

 Impossible Foods has raised more than $200 million to make a burger engineered from plants that tastes at least as good as ground beef. The company’s many backers are hoping to disrupt the massive “animal products” industry with food that is appealing, affordable and produced in an environmentally sustainable way. Read More

RecordGram thinks your phone is the new recording studio

 If RecordGram has its way, top record producers will all turn to their app, a kind of mobile recording studio, to find the next Justin Bieber or Nicki Minaj. And aspiring artists will all find beats, create songs and get signed to their first label through RecordGram. The company was a “wildcard” contender at TechCrunch’s Startup Battlefield in New York today. Read More

Teleretail built a delivery robot to make on-demand logistics easy for small businesses

 Delivery robots are seen as novelties, job-killers and a gimmicky way for restaurants to reach nearby customers. The newest entrant in this segment of logistics is a Swiss startup called Teleretail AG. The company has put a twist on the personal delivery device—its machines, still in prototype, were designed to cover long distances, up to 50 miles, and to serve rural and suburban… Read More

Ceres Imaging raises $5 million to pinpoint crop stress for farmers

 Oakland, Calif.-based Ceres Imaging has raised $5 million in a Series A investment led by Romulus Capital. The startup uses cameras, sensors and software to pinpoint crop stress in the field for farmers, so that they can apply herbicides, pesticides and irrigation just where it’s needed. Ceres, like several other startups, started out with the notion to build a drone just for… Read More

Fortem raises $5.5 million to hunt and take down unwanted drones

 After drones became available to private citizens around the world, bad actors found ways to use them for nefarious purposes like spying on corporations, carrying contraband across borders and into prison yards, and sadly, turning the aerial robots into weapons. Drone crashes also put people and property in harm’s way. Provo, Utah-based Fortem Technologies Inc. has raised $5.5 million in… Read More

Made In Space reveals the Archinaut, a robot-operated factory in the sky

 Made In Space is known as the company behind the 3D printers on board the International Space Station. Astronauts have used the startup’s Additive Manufacturing Facility to churn out everything from finger splints to tools — and even other printer parts. Now the company is revealing a video rendering of its larger Archinaut system, a factory in the sky operated by autonomous robots. Read More

Rethink Robotics and iRobot founder Rod Brooks is coming to Disrupt NY

 In the Errol Morris documentary, Fast, Cheap and Out of Control, robotic scientist Rodney Brooks predicted a future where sensors and robots would be pervasive, and people could simply tell a door to open. That was 1997. Brooks’ prognostication has now came to pass. Voice control and the internet of things are here. Robots, or “artificial creatures” as he sometimes has… Read More

Mayo maker Hampton Creek is shedding execs

 Food and beverage startups backed by tech investors are having a rough go of it this season, with Juicero all but melting down and companies like Memphis Meats, Urban Remedy and Soylent recalling products, according to required disclosures on the federal site Foodsafety.gov. Now, Hampton Creek Foods, a packaged goods company backed by the likes of Horizons, Khosla, and AME Cloud… Read More