| Follow Us: Facebook Twitter Youtube RSS Feed

Innovation + Job News

EarthClean raises $765K for rollout of TetraKO non-toxic firefighting gel

A Minneapolis cleantech startup is loosening the nozzle after raising at least $765,000 from investors to roll out its non-toxic, biodegradable firefighting gel.

EarthClean recently disclosed that it was about a quarter of the way through a $3 million round of equity financing. The company's product, TetraKO, is a low-cost, environmentally safer alternative to conventional firefighting foams.

"We've had a couple of fire chiefs tell us that they understand it performs better, but quite frankly if it was just as good as foam they'd buy it because of the environmental aspects," says EarthClean CEO Doug Ruth.

TetraKO is a patented dry-mix product that, when mixed with water, forms a non-toxic gel that sticks to surfaces and suppresses flames. It was developed over the past decade by a Woodbury volunteer firefighter and a trio of former 3M and H.B. Fuller chemists and engineers.

Ruth acquired their patents and founded EarthClean a couple of years ago. The company is getting ready to manufacture its first 10,000 pounds of the product in the next two weeks and will have it available for commercial sale within four weeks.

It's hitting the market at a time when there's growing concern about the pollution left behind by chemical-based foams and gels. Minnesota health officials last year were investigating potential drinking water contamination in 15 cities. And a federal judge in Montana ruled last month the U.S. Forest Service is breaking the law when it uses harmful chemical retardants on wildfires because they can hurt fish and wildlife.

EarthClean's product is certified as non-toxic and biodegradable and offers a safer alternative, says Ruth. "It's a game-changing technology that really could change the way the world fights fires."

(Also: EarthClean is a division finalist in the 2010 Minnesota Cup competition. See our update here.)

Source: Doug Ruth, EarthClean Corp.
Writer: Dan Haugen

Signup for Email Alerts
Signup for Email Alerts