18 August 2016

Valor Fire Safety Secures Strategic Investment from Maxim Ventures

ESP Chamberless Smoke Detection Technology Resistant to Nuisance Alarms, Exceeds New Regulations

LONDONDERRY, New Hampshire—Valor Fire Safety, LLC announced today that it has closed a strategic investment from Maxim Ventures, the venture arm for semiconductor company Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. based in San Jose, CA. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. With Maxim’s investment, Valor will accelerate the development and marketing of its External Sampling Photoelectric (ESP) smoke detection technology. ESP replaces the internal chamber found in traditional smoke detectors with an optical smoke detector integrated circuit (IC) to identify smoke outside the device in real time. Patented algorithms quickly detect smoldering and flaming fires, but are more resistant to nuisance alarms. ESP has been proven in smoke detector certification facilities around the world.

In addition, Valor has formed a technical collaboration with Maxim, a global leader in analog innovation and integration which designs, manufactures, and sells high-performance semiconductor products, to bring the first-of-its-kind optical smoke detector IC to market. With Maxim’s MAX30105 optical sensor for smoke detector applications and Valor’s patented algorithms, smoke detector and other OEMs will be able to quickly and efficiently implement their own solutions providing a faster path to market. Valor’s ESP smoke detection technology exceeds new residential smoke alarm regulations that will be effective in 2019.

The fully integrated optical sensor by Maxim integrates multiple LEDs, a photodiode, and signal processing circuitry. The sensor is compact, rejects ambient light efficiently, and is optimized for particle size sensing which is key to distinguishing smoke from steam.    

“Maxim is looking for world-class algorithms to pair with our chips, and this partnership with Valor allows both companies to fine-tune a complete solution that gives best overall performance and also saves cost and space,” said Chris Neil, Head of Maxim Ventures and Senior Vice President of Maxim Integrated.

“Valor has a very unique and special technology which should be installed in smoke detection systems in homes, schools, commercial buildings, and industrial facilities. We believe our collaboration with Valor will help this emerging technology company expand its reach and meet its mission to save lives around the world,” added Shailendra Mahajan, Managing Director of Maxim Ventures.

“ESP smoke detection technology is a low-cost, proven, and reliable solution that will enhance fire safety for millions of people,” stated Dr. Matthew Erdtmann, CEO of Valor. “Working with Maxim Ventures and Maxim Integrated allows us to broadly disseminate our technology to smoke detector OEMs worldwide.”

About Maxim Ventures

Maxim Ventures, the venture arm of Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. (“Maxim”), invests in new businesses that are "beyond the chip." We leverage Maxim’s enabling sensor and integrated circuit technologies and use that know-how as the basis to build companies that extend up the data-flow value chain into equipment, systems, software and services. Visit Maxim Ventures at http://www.maximventures.com.

About Valor Fire Safety

Based in Londonderry, New Hampshire, Valor is the creator and exclusive licensor of External Sampling Photoelectric (ESP) smoke detection technology. Our mission is to make ESP the new global standard in smoke detection.  ESP enables quicker activation to fire events, greater resistance to nuisance alarms, and ultra-compact and flush-mount designs. Valor licenses its IP portfolio, containing over one dozen issued and pending patents in the US and other countries, to OEMs worldwide. Visit Valor at http://www.valorfiresafety.com.