Axios Pro Exclusive Content

Exclusive: Bedrock raises $8.5M to bring geothermal to large buildings

A photo of giant steel cable wrapped around a spool on the back of a green truck, next two another truck with what looks like a generator on the back.

Bedrock Energy's deep-drilling cable, left, can stretch as long as 3,000 feet. Photo: Courtesy of Bedrock Energy

Geothermal heating and cooling startup Bedrock Energy closed an $8.5 million seed round for its focus on big apartment and commercial buildings, the company tells Axios exclusively.

Why it matters: The company says its deeper boreholes allow it to service properties that have so far been too big for most conventional geothermal projects.

Catch up fast: Geothermal companies drill into the Earth's surface to draw heat aboveground for warmth, and to pump warm air underground for cooling.

Details: Bedrock adapted technology from the oil and gas industry to drill deep boreholes within a tiny footprint, enabling the company to more efficiently produce the abundant heat and cooling needed for large buildings.

  • Where most developers drill 300 to 800 feet below the surface, Bedrock uses a single piece of coiled steel to drill 2,000 feet, where temperatures are hotter.
  • That enables the company to shrink a project's footprint to eight boreholes instead of as many as 28.

Zoom in: A team of four former oil and gas workers operates the coil and equipment.

  • The tube's name: "the Immortal Coil."

Driving the news: Wireframe Ventures led the all-equity round, which closed last month.

  • Other investors include Overture Climate VC, Long Journey Ventures, Cantos, Toba Capital, First Star Ventures, Divergent Capital, and Climate Capital.
  • Wireframe managing partner Paul Straub joined Bedrock's three-member board.

What's next: Bedrock, based in Austin and Los Angeles, is developing a pilot project at an undisclosed commercial building. It's targeting properties spanning 50,000 to 250,000 square feet.

Go deeper