Cambium, an advanced materials innovator for defense and other high-performance fields, announced a $19 million Series A funding round. 8VC led the round, with participation from Veteran Ventures, GSBackers, Marlinspike, MVP Ventures, Gaingels, Kern Venture Fund, Jackson Moses (Founder, Silent Ventures), Vertical Capital, and select angel investors. DLA Piper provided legal counsel to Cambium on the transaction. This significant investment underscores Cambium’s commitment to addressing critical capability and supply chain gaps to support current and future high-performance hardware needs across land, air, sea and space applications. These same innovations are widely applicable outside defense, from commercial aerospace to renewable energy.
This Series A round enables Cambium to build out staffing and R&D, rapid discovery-to-field demonstrations, and pilot-scale manufacturing. Each of the above will accelerate the development of its product pipeline, such as the advancement of next-generation Thermal Protection Systems (TPS) for defense tech and commercial applications.
Cambium’s TPSs are designed and fabricated to better protect various hardware against extreme conditions such as heat, fire and rapid-heating impacts, and from severe aerodynamic heating and pressure loads experienced during flight. Existing TPSs are slow to manufacture and severely supply-constrained. Cambium is developing alternative TPSs that exhibit similar high thermal stability and mechanical strength characteristics, coupled with easier manufacturing processes and a stable domestic supply chain.
More broadly, Cambium is supporting the generational shift in the defense industrial base from large, complex, manned platforms to autonomous, networked systems. This includes everything from the emergence of new platforms like UAVs and hypersonics to the need for lightweighting and improved fuel consumption across many platforms. Each requires material solutions that make products easier, faster, and cheaper to produce.
Cambium’s contracts include BioMADE (a prime contractor), as well as the bio-manufacturing arm of the Department of Defense (DoD), which drives the transition of bio-for-defense (B4D) products from the laboratory to defense and commercial markets. Cambium also works closely with the U.S. Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division and the U.S. Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering to develop a range of new high-performance biomaterials that can be industry certified and integrated into a broad set of high-value defense and aerospace performance systems. These range from hypersonic flight vehicles to enhanced survivability unmanned aerial vehicles to laser-protective eyewear and optics.
“The continuous advancement of next-generation hardware for air, land, sea and space applications also demands continuous improvements in advanced materials and associated supply chains used to fabricate and protect these hardware,” says Cambium co-founder and CEO Simon Waddington. “Cambium has closely collaborated with multiple arms of the US defense community and commercial innovators to build solutions to meet their ongoing requirements. The benefits of our vertically-integrated development approach, from computational material discovery through to production of advanced composite solutions, is designed for rapid innovation, production and deployment.”
According to Joe Lonsdale, Managing Partner, 8VC, “The rise of autonomous and software-defined systems makes the development of advanced materials that much more urgent. Cambium is a force multiplier for defense innovation, and we are proud to have supported their mission from the beginning.”