Zurich Soft Robotics plans market launch with fresh capital


Zurich – Zurich Soft Robotics has received early funding of CHF 1.5 million from an anonymous Swiss-based market leader. With this, the start-up wants to bring this year’s Watt d’Or winner, its façade system for photovoltaics called Solskin, to market before the end of 2023.

Zurich Soft Robotics plans to use the proceeds from an early financing to launch Solskin, its multifunctional and adaptive photovoltaic (PV) façade system: it produces electricity and enables interior shading. The €1.5 million investment comes from an undisclosed international market leader based in Switzerland.

As startupticker.ch reports, the spin-off from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich(ETH), founded in 2022, intends to use this investment to expand its team, accelerate the development of Solskin and make the system commercially available from the third quarter of this year. This is reportedly the world’s first movable PV façade system. Thanks to a patented hybrid robot drive made of hard and soft material and artificial intelligence, it enables movable modules that follow the path of the sun.

Zurich Soft Robotics erected a fully functional demonstrator with the HiLo facade at the NEST modular research and innovation building of the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research(Empa) in Dübendorf ZH. Another demonstrator was set up at the ETH Zero Carbon Buildings Systems laboratory at the end of 2022. The company is implementing the first and largest pilot project with Keller Druckmesstechnik AG in Winterthur. The sensor company plans to complete a new main manufacturing building by 2025. With a 1300 square meter Solskin façade on its south side, Keller AG wants to keep its electricity and cooling requirements as low as possible and produce renewable electricity.

Solskin won the 2023 Watt d’Or in the Buildings and Space category. mm