Seven college students honored for innovative projects in Collegiate Inventors Competition 2000
AKRON, OH -- The National Inventors Hall of Fame® announced today seven student winners in this year's Collegiate Inventors Competition (CIC) -- the leading program honoring college student inventors worldwide.
Winning inventions this year range from a new class of compounds that kill bacteria and may represent an alternative form of chemotherapy to a dramatic breakthrough in the construction of reusable spacecraft and jet aircraft. The CIC is a nationwide competition that recognizes college student/advisor teams for their innovative work. Each winning inventor or team will receive $20,000 in cash monies with each advisor receiving a $10,000 honorarium. Each winner will receive their cash prize on Friday, September 8, 2000 at an awards ceremony featuring Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Computer, as keynote speaker.
Student's Name / School / Description of Invention
Emilie Porter -- University of Wisconsin Emilie Porter has invented a fundamentally new type of synthetic antibiotic that could represent a major contribution to human health. She has created a beta-amino acid oligomer that kills both gram positive and gram negative bacteria (including strains which are resistant to common antibiotics) without harming human red blood cells. This peptide and related compounds may represent a new type of chemotherapy treatment for bacterial infections in humans.
Matthew Dickerson and Raymond Unocic -- Ohio State University Matthew Dickerson and Raymond Unocic have created a novel breakthrough in the low-cost processing of high-performance, complex-shaped ceramic composites. The composites produced through their innovative PRIMA process can be used in high temperature, abrasive environments and can be applied to high technology applications such as spacecraft, rockets and advanced jetcraft.
Colin Bulthaup and Eric Wilhelm -- MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Colin Bulthaup and Eric Wilhelm have fabricated a clean, quick, and highly cost-effective manufacturing process for integrating circuits. Designed to expand upon the set of potential applications used in semiconductor electronics, optics and biosystems, their invention involves the direct patterning of functional materials through a purely additive process. Additionally, its multi-layer functional devices cover very large areas quickly and efficiently.
Balaji Srinivasan -- University of New Mexico Balaji Srinivasan has invented a high power, mid-infrared laser that can be used in ultrafine intra-ocular and endoscopic surgery including removal of epiretinal membranes, glaucoma, vision correction, trans-myocardial revascularization, and in dentistry. Such a laser is an invaluable tool for several surgical applications because of its strong absorption rate that leads to ultrashort penetration and enables precise surgery with minimal damage. Environmentally, his invention can be used to measure ambient air quality and aids in monitoring hazardous gas.
Daniel Hartmann -- University of California at San Diego Daniel Hartmann designed a microlens fabrication technique that offers several advantages over conventional technologies including room temperature processing and ultra low-cost. These advantages make this technique a strong candidate for use in the construction of microlenses for commercial applications such as board-to-board, chip-to-chip, and even on-a-chip free-space and fiber-optical interconnects within computers, displays and switching/imaging systems.
This year's winners were selected from among 33 finalists whose projects were reviewed by a committee of esteemed judges including mathematicians, engineers, biologists, chemists, environmentalists, physicists, computer specialists, members of the medical and veterinary profession, and specialists in creativity and invention. More than 120 inventions, representing 73 institutions nationwide, were entered in this year's competition (a 33% increase from last year). The initial entrants included full-time undergraduate, graduate and post-doc students enrolled at any college or university at the time of the competition. The collegiate projects relate to many scientific disciplines including biomedical, microbiology, engineering, and information technology.
"We are excited about the increase in entries that were submitted for this year's Collegiate Inventors Competition. We received over 120 outstanding inventions, and while all were compelling, this year's winners exceeded the criteria and will be honored at an awards dinner on Friday, September 8," said Tom Hollingsworth, director of recognition programs for the National Inventors Hall of Fame®. "Each of our winners are extraordinary young scientists who have developed inventions that will benefit modern technology and science. We look forward to assisting the winners in the U.S. Patent process, hoping to some day see them inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame."
Each invention is judged on the originality and inventiveness of the new idea, process or technology and must be complete, workable, and well articulated. Entries are also judged on their potential value to society (socially, environmentally, and economically), and on their range or scope of use. This year is the tenth year the National Inventors Hall of Fame® has administered the Collegiate Inventors Competition.
###The Collegiate Inventors Competition is a national competition designed to encourage collegiate activity in science, engineering, mathematics, technology and creative invention. The Collegiate Inventors Competition seeks to stimulate excitement and interest in technology and economic leadership by facilitating student/advisor relationships, innovations, and creative problem solving.
For more information about the Collegiate Inventors Competition or the National Inventors Hall of Fame® in Akron, Ohio, including a complete listing of winning inventions, please visit http://www.invent.org
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