The six teams competing to win the Georgia Tech InVenture Prize share a common desire to improve our lives.
Their inventions include a surgical device to correct drooping eyelids, an interactive tool to learn Braille and a way to make the perfect cup of coffee.
The InVenture Prize competition is designed to encourage and support undergraduate students’ interest in invention, innovation and entrepreneurship. More than 500 students signed up for this year’s contest.
"Once again we were impressed with what Georgia Tech students invent to solve some of the problems facing society," said Chris Reaves, director of Undergraduate Research and Student Innovation, and one of InVenture’s organizers. "InVenture is part of the changing culture at Georgia Tech where our students are becoming entrepreneurs.”
This year’s finalists are:
Eqip: Eqip is a website marketplace that allows musicians to experiment with expensive audio tools before committing to a purchase. Team members are Shehmeer Jiwani and Adam Szaruga, both computer science majors.
Flame Tech Grill Defender: Flame Tech is a safety device for gas grills that alerts users when gas levels become dangerous. Team members are Alex Roe, a computer science major; Scott Schroer, a mechanical engineering major; and Will Sweet, a business administration major.
Haplit: Haplit is an interactive device for teaching Braille to those who were born blind or are living with degenerative diseases. Team members are Philip Bale, a computer science major; Megan Fechter, a business administration major; and Chandler Matz, a computer engineering major.
OculoStaple: The OculoStaple is a medical device to safely treat ptosis, drooping of the upper eyelid. The team members — Jacquelyn Borinski, Mohamad Ali Najia and Drew Padilla — are all biomedical engineering majors.
QuantaBrew: The QuantaBrew is an airtight container that dispenses a set amount of coffee grounds each pour, simplifying the process of making coffee every morning. The inventor is Jack Breen, a mechanical engineering major.
Shortweb: Shortweb aims to improve the way we access information on the Internet by allowing people to highlight and save text on any webpage and share that information with others. Team members are Ricardo De Andrade, who is majoring in industrial engineering and computer science; and Miguel Oller, a mechanical engineering major.
The winning team earns $20,000 and the second-place team receives $10,000.
Both the first- and second-place finishers will receive free US patent filings by Georgia Tech’s Office of Technology Licensing and a spot in Georgia Tech’s startup accelerator program, Flashpoint.
A $5,000 People’s Choice Award will go to the fans’ favorite invention. Voting will be by text messaging during the finale.
The finale will take place April 1 at the Ferst Center for the Arts on campus. Tickets are free and can be requested here.
The event will also be aired on Georgia Public Broadcasting.