Aerones, a company that creates robots that scrub and inspect wind turbines, brought in $38.9 million in funding, according to TechCrunch. The funding came from dozens of undisclosed investors, and the company hopes to bring in $2.5 million more, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Aerones uses robots operated by three Aerons technicians. The robots clean the towers and blades of wind turbines, which can leak hundreds of liters of oil causing corroded blades, increased wind resistance and pollution in the ground below.
The robots blast the blades and towers with a liquid biodegradable detergent. As the robot cleans, the water used for cleaning is collected by skits and belts and pumped into a filtering station. Once the water is filtered, it can be safely reused. Aerones’ robots also use cameras and ultrasound scanners to inspect the turbine.
Aerones claims its robots can help minimize downtime on wind turbines by 4-6 times and reduce idle stay by 5-10 times. The company has cleaned over 5,000 turbines to date across 19 different countries, an over 2,000 increase in turbines cleaned since April of this year when the company claimed it had serviced over 3,000 turbines in 17 countries.
Despite its rapid growth, Aerones still has plenty of room to expand in the industry. There are more than 70,800 wind turbines in the U.S., which, in 2021, generated around 9% of all electricity in the U.S.
In April 2022, Aerones raised $9 million in seed funding. It planned to use the funding to further accelerate the global scaling of its system. Its investors included Future Positive Capital, an existing investor Change Ventures, Skype founder Jaan Tallinn, Pace Ventures, EcoSummit and more.
Aerones has partnerships with some of the largest wind companies, including Siemens Gamesa, Enel, GE and Vestas.