The Cheng Wu Innovation Challenge aims to reward students for creating novel, nonobvious, technology feasible, user-centered, and implementable innovation. This year, two pairs of students, members of the FAMES Lab were honored in receiving the first and second place in this competition.
The first place, with a prize of $10,000, was awarded to Louis van der Elst and Merve Gokce Kurtoglu for creating a tissue engineering device that serves as an alternative to animal studies and patient-oriented medicine. The device, named the TrophoWell uses stem cell engineering combined with microfluidics as a tissue model. Medical treatments can be personalized by testing a drug ratios and content that can be developped specific to a patient according to his or her stem cells. The TrophoWell is an upgradable device that allows for the testing of biochemical and physical reactions at both the micro- and macro-scale. The Trophowell name is trademarked and the technology is patented under publication number US20210301244.
The second place, with a prize of $5,000, was awarded to Menxin Zheng and Camila Faccini de Lima for developing three-dimensional printing of glass fiber preforms using stereolythography. Structured silica fibers could benefit multiple applications. For example, dyeless coloration of fabrics for fashion, photonic crystal fibers for optical-chemical detection, and single-mode fibers for telecommunication and tight focusing of light.
The competition had 23 applicants and 8 finalists. The judging committee was composed of:
- Alain Barker, Lecturer of Music Entrepreneurship & Director of Music Entrepreneurship and Career Development
- Donald F. Kuratko, Jack M. Gill Chair of Entrepreneurship, Professor of Entrepreneurship, and Executive Director of the Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, Kelley School of Business
- Kay Connelly, Associate Dean for Research & Professor of Informatics
- Pat East, CEO & Founder of Hanapin Marketing & Executive Director of the Dimension Mill
- Stephen Moseson, Co-founder of Misa Digital Instruments