Careers & Advancement

2016 MRS Spring Meeting iMatSci

Innovators presented their technologies and were judged, with cash prizes awarded, based on the following criteria: clarity, presentation, value proposition, impact and scalability.

First Place

Supriya Jaiswal
Astrileux Corporation
 Next Generation, Sub-14 nm (IC) Chips

Second Place

Hadrien Michaud
Arthur Hirsch
École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne
High Performance Stretchable Electronics

Third Place

David Smith
Cynthia Hibbard
HealthTell, Inc.
Peptide Microarrays

iMatSci Innovator Demonstrations

Toughpoint 3D Printed Materials

Adaptive 3D Technologies (Supported by NSF)
At Adaptive 3D Technologies, we are seeking to realize the vision of ready-to-use 3D printed parts for industrial applications. Unlike other companies, Adaptive is tackling this goal through novel chemistries which enable toughness’s greater than 20 MJ/m3. This approach also enables the 3D printing of high strain (400%), high surface finish and even shape memory materials. With this array of materials, Adaptive has engaged partners in the oil and gas, apparel, defense, and electronics markets.

Team: Walter Voit, Srishti Goel, Benjamin Lund, Brent Duncan, Jim Amato, Jesse Huffstetler, Daniel Zamorano

Contact: Srishti Goel, Adaptive 3D Technologies
Office: 972-883-7124 | Mobile: 972-992-8197

ClaveCore—Self Pressurizing Composite Tooling for Composites

Advanced Ceramics Manufacturing (Supported by NSF)
Advanced Ceramics Manufacturing’s (AMC) soluble mandrel technology allows manufacturers of carbon fiber composites to form high complexity, hollow geometries. The ClaveCore tooling system eliminates the costs associated with autoclave based processing. ClaveCore is the only self-pressurizing mandrel that can be removed with tap water. Several grades of ClaveCore now exist to meet custom process requirements. Customers who want to lower manufacturing costs, make impossible parts, and improve their composite quality/reliability are invited to contact ACM.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Zachary Wing, Pat Caldwell, Mark Angier

Contact: Zachary Wing, Advanced Ceramics Manufacturing
Office: 520-547-0861

Advanced Hydro-desulfurization Catalyst

Advanced Energy Materials, LLC (Supported by NSF)
Advanced Energy Materials LLC.’s innovation relies on nanowire supported formulations for high performance catalysts and adsorbents by design. Specific product involves a reactive catalyst design for ultra-deep desulfurization and hydrogenation of aromatics. Our product removes sulfur from fuels well below 15 ppm and improves cetane number for diesels. AdEM’s potential customers are small to medium scale oil and gas refineries. The value proposition involves cost savings and easy control for HDS in meeting EPA standards.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Juan He

Contact: Juan He, Advanced Energy Materials, LLC
Mobile: 513-728-9462

Nanotechnology Enabled Shock Absorbing Polymer Composite

Akervall Technologies, Inc. (Supported by NSF)
A nanotechnology enabled shock absorbing polymer composite has been developed and utilized to realize a mouthguard that promises to provide markedly improved protection from dental injuries. The market disruptive mouthguard offers comprehensive dental protection, both high velocity activated protection and broad spectrum dental protection in a very thin profile, about 2 mm thick. The innovative composite can bring high level impact force absorbing functionality in a light-weight durable polymer material to a plethora of applications.

Team: Valarie Thomas, Jan Akervall, Johannes Schwank

Contact: Valarie Thomas, Akervall Technologies, Inc.
Office: 734-389-7406|Mobile: 734-928-5512








Penn-State Bronze


ASU Bronze

MRSEC Northwestern Bronze

Easy Release and Reusable Dry Adhesive

Akron Ascent Innovations (Supported by NSF)
Akron Ascent Innovations (AAI) has developed a revolutionary new super-adhesive made entirely of solid fibers—a dry adhesive. These adhesives are designed to be extremely strong in one direction (a thumbnail size piece of A’Qat™ can hold over 100 pounds), but can still be easily removed, repositioned, and reused, all without damaging your surface. AAI uses a commercial-scale electrospinning technique used in other industries to produce these materials and aims to be the first company to bring dry adhesives out of the laboratory for real world applications.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Kevin White

Contact: Kevin White, Akron Ascent Innovations

Next Generation, Sub-14 nm (IC) Chips

Astrileux Corporation
Astrileux’s strategy is to design advanced technologies that enable high volume EUV manufacturing of next generation integrated circuits (IC) chips at 14 nm and smaller, with higher profitability, sustainability and global accessibility, but without high cost of ownership. Astrileux was the winner of the 2015 Semicon West Innovation Showcase, and voted one of San Diego’s coolest companies by the VC community. Astrileux is supported by NSF, and CASIS, Center of Advancement of Science in Space.

Team: Supriya Jaiswal, Jeremy Baumberg

Contact: Supriya Jaiswal, Astrileux Corporation

BetR‐blok Composite Construction Blocks

BetR-blok, LLC
BetR‐blok, LLC (pronounced “better block”) is a start‐up company manufacturing low‐cost, composite construction blocks made from recycled paper, cardboard and other cellulosic materials. BetR‐blok is light‐weight, load bearing, self‐insulating and highly energy efficient (R‐36). It requires no exterior or interior finish, is competitively priced and is an environmentally responsible substitute for wood –therefore saving trees. BetR‐blok enables home construction and improvements with fewer materials, resulting in lower cost and less environmental impact.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Barry Fuller, Chris Frettoloso

Contact: Chris Frettoloso, Arizona State University

MicroElectrode Array Stretching Stimulating und Recording Equipment (MEASSuRE)

The human body is soft and round whereas current implanted electronic devices are hard and rigid. This mismatch in mechanical properties causes a rejection of the electrode, the electrodes can damage the tissue, or be damaged by it. BMSEED’s electrodes solve these problems by making electrodes that are mechanically equivalent to human tissue. We envision BMSEED to have three distinct product categories for our electrodes: in vitro, in the brain, and in the peripheral nerves.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Oliver Graudejus, Ruben Ponce Wong

Contact: Oliver Graudejus, BMSEED LLC | Arizona State University
Mobile: 609-532-9744

Breezing® Mobile Metabolism Tracker

Breezing Co. 
Breezing® is the world’s first mobile metabolism tracker that synchronizes wirelessly to a mobile app and allows you to track your metabolism anytime, anywhere. The sensing technology in Breezing® is based on novel nanocomposite materials with unique selectivity for detection of oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide production rates from the person's breathing. In this way, Breezing® measures your metabolism based on indirect calorimetry recommended by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and other international institutions.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Erica Forzani, NJ Tao, Francis Tsow, Xiaojun Xian

Contact: Erica Forzani, Breezing Co. 
Office: 480-629-5360 | Mobile: 480-330-1804

High Performance Stretchable Electronics

École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne 
Our technology is a new class of soft metallization based on biphasic (solid-liquid) thin metal films. The films combine low sheet resistance (down to 0.5 Ω/sq) and elasticity (up to 400 % elongation), are compatible with wafer-scale fabrication and photolithographic structuring, and can be stretched for a million cycles. We are able to interface with packaged chips to form multilayers soft circuits. Applications range from wearable electronics to large displacements sensors for the industry. 

Team: Hadrien Michaud, Arthur Hirsch

Contact: Hadrien Michaud, École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne 
Office: (41) 21 693 67 35

Multifunctional Field Emission Electron Sources Based on UltraNanoCrystalline Diamond Films

Euclid TechLabs LLC 
Euclid TechLabs LLC, in collaboration with Argonne National Laboratory, will deliver a new planer field-emitter platform based on a nitrogen-incorporated ultrananocrystalline diamond, (N)UNCD. The platform is (1) cost-competitive and scalable; (2) highly-emissive (obtained current densities are ≥10 mA/cm2); (3) robust (stable against high electric/thermal loads and air exposure/storage). Our targeted market is industrial and scientific linear accelerators, both normal-conducting and superconducting, for isotope production for radiopharmacy; X-/gamma-ray production for medicine, non-destructive evaluation, well-logging; materials processing; basic sciences.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Sergey Baryshev, Anirudha Sumant

Contact: Anirudha Sumant, Argonne National Laboratory
Office: 630-252-4854

Engineered Nanowire Networks as Transparent Conductors

FOM Institute AMOLF | Energy research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) 
Metallic nanowire networks can simultaneously exceed TCOs in conductivity, transparency, and flexibility. However, existing fabrication methods cannot control the micro- and nano-scale network morphology over large areas. Researchers at the FOM Institute AMOLF have recently shown that substrate-conformal soft-imprint lithography (SCIL) enables wafer-scale fabrication of metallic nanowire networks on both flat and textured substrates, with nm-level precision. Applied to silicon heterojunction solar cells, these networks significantly enhance power conversion efficiencies relative to ITO (2.2% absolute).
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Mark W. Knight, Jorik van de Groep, Paula C.P. Bronsveld, Wim C. Sinke, Albert Polman 

Contact: Mark Knight, FOM Institute AMOLF | Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN)
Office: (31) 20 754 7170

Peptide Microarrays

HealthTell, Inc. 
HealthTell, Inc. is a development stage biotechnology company pioneering ImmunoSignature™ technology, a comprehensive measurement of the molecular recognition profile of circulating antibodies in the blood. Using peptide microarrays that are designed, developed, and manufactured at HealthTell. a signature for a particular disease is detected. HealthTell is committed to empowering the next generation of diagnostics and therapeutics for complex immune-mediated diseases such as cancer, autoimmune disorders, and infectious disease.

Team: David Smith, Cynthia Hibbard

Contact: David Smith, HealthTell, Inc.
Office: 480-659-1564|Mobile: 857-998-8773

Ferrock Green Building Material

Iron Shell LLC 
Iron Shell LLC is commercializing a new, green building material called Ferrock that is better, cheaper, and greener than Portland cement. Ferrock is better because scientific analysis shows that it is superior in several qualities including crack resistance. Ferrock is cheaper because its main ingredients are solid wastes that are not typically recycled. Ferrock is greener because it is carbon negative during the curing stage and captures CO2. 

Team: David Stone, Sumanta Das

Contact: David Stone, Iron Shell LLC 
Mobile: 520-288-0911

LATscan Laser Ablation Tomography Technology

L4iS is a technology company based in State College, Pennsylvania offering its patent-pending Laser Ablation Tomography ("LATscan") technology. LATscan is a 3D imaging technology utilizing a high powered laser to rapidly slice and vaporize specimens, combined with a proprietary imaging system to acquire high resolution, naturally-colored, highly-contrasted 3D imagery of entire specimens, including internal structure. LATscan offers greater resolution, greater contrast, and rapid sample processing speeds compared to competing imaging and microscopy techniques. LATscan offers the ability to conduct high-throughput analysis of a multitude of features, including structural, statistical, volumetric, and chemical composition.

Team: Benjamin Hall, Josh Blosenski, Asheesh Lanba

Contact: Josh Blosenski, L4iS 
Mobile: 610-742-9291

Hiji Band

Movement Interactive, LLC 
Movement Interactive develops the Hiji BandTM, which is a wearable system that consists of an impact-detecting sensor that fit comfortably inside a custom athletic garment. The Hiji BandTM sensor is capable of tracking key factors from a head impact, namely direction, location, and speed. Current solutions presented in this space are very expensive and have focused on helmeted sports. The Hiji BandTM is applicable to detecting head impacts in wrestling, soccer, basketball, boxing, and during military operations. 

Team: Eric L. Luster

Contact: Eric L. Luster, Movement Interactive, LLC
Office: 520-226-5977 | Mobile: 520-226-5977

eLOCOS Metallization Technology

NANO3D's controlled expansion alloy films plated using revolutionary eLOCOS technology enable high density and fine-pitch 3D & area array interconnections with coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE's) tuned to match substrates and chips CTE's in order to fabricate stress-free 3D assembles of electronic devices with improved joint reliability. NANO3D SYSTEMS LLC supply customers with proprietary plating solutions to electroplate controlled expansion alloy films with superior properties for customer applications as well as provide controlled-expansion alloy pinhole free foils and films on variety of substrates for various applications in semiconductor, optical, sensor, display and clean energy technologies.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Val Dubin

Contact: Val Dubin, NANO3D SYSTEMS LLC 
Office: 971-327-4055|Mobile: 503-927-4766

Night Vision Compatible Quantum Dot Optic

Navillum Nanotechnologies (Supported by NSF) 
Navillum is developing a night vision compatible-quantum dot (QD) display optics for use in avionics and other display applications. Our Night Vision Compatible QD Optic "thick film" is a unique, rugged, low-cost form factor that is a perfect drop-in fit for modern High Definition night vision compatible avionics displays and can be easily modified to fit other display applications. Our current military avionics application is also suitable for the growing commercial aircraft night vision market. 

Team: Kevin Jessing, Jacqueline Siy-Ronquillo

Contact: Kevin Jessing, Navillum Nanotechnologies
Mobile: 801-835-3994

Thermal Energy Harvesting for the Internet of Things

The Pennsylvania State University (Supported by NSF)
By 2025, few trillions of ‘things’ around homes, streets, industrial plants, energy grids etc., will wirelessly connect to create the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT). The question is, how are these ‘things’ going to be powered? Definitely not by wires or batteries. Energy harvesting can be a sustainable solution but current products are larger and costlier than the electronics itself and are ineffective at lower energy (temperature, light, vibration) levels. We will demonstrate a 1" x 1" prototype that can power a wireless sensor from only 100 F without any heat sink.

Team: Aman Haque, Kamrun Nahar (Impulse Technology LLC)

Contact: Aman Haque, The Pennsylvania State University
Office: 814-865-4248|Mobile: 814-769-6473

Ice Release Coatings

Polymer Exploration Group LLC (Supported by NSF)
PEG LLC has developed a novel ice-release coating technology that makes removal of ice easy, i.e. ER-Coat based on a new model and a fast throughput testing method. ER-Coat is a low-cost, robust, durable coating system using engineering materials offering superior ice-release performance on different substrates. ER-Coat and its derivatives will mitigate ice related problems that encountered in wind energy, oil industry, aerospace, telecommunications, power utilities, and marine activities in cold regions.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Wei Zhang, Kenneth Wynne, Cameron Brinn

Contact: Wei Zhang, Polymer Exploration Group LLC
Mobile: 540-239-2438

Composites as Electronics

Power Gold LLC
Composite materials are deployed to design, prototype and produce "paper-thin" electronics. See, touch, bend, fold, ultra-light weight, durable, better electronics. Greener film products will consume 50% to 99% less materials. Rolls of film electronics will be produced like newspapers.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: James Wang

Contact: James Wang, Power Gold LLC 
Mobile: 480-200-3311

Solid Acid Fuel Cells

SAFCell, Inc. 
SAFCell, Inc. develops scalable solid acid fuel cell (SAFC) stacks for portable, remote, and stationary power applications. Based on technology developed at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and operating at mid-range temperatures around 250°C, SAFCell’s stacks tolerate fuel impurities that pose obstacles to other fuel cell technologies. This allows SAFCell stacks to run easily on commercially available fuels (e.g., natural gas or diesel), greatly reducing the overall fuel cell system cost. 
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Calum R.I. Chisholm

Contact: Calum R.I. Chisholm, SAFCell, Inc. 
Office: 626-795-0029 x101

Self-assembling Process for Fabricating Tailored Thin Films

Sandia National Laboratories
A self-assembled nanoparticle coating process is developed for optical, electrical, and magnetic films at near ambient conditions. The nanoparticles impart to the films collective, often nonlinear physical properties due to the properties of the individual nanoparticles and their coupled interactions. Resultant functionality is distinct from that of bulk materials or conventional composites. The coating process results in significant advantages of reduced costs, increased manufacturing freedom/producibility, improved logistics, and the incorporation of new technology solutions.

Team: Hongyou Fan

Contact: Hongyou Fan, Sandia National Laboratories 
Office: 505-272-7128


Serionix, Inc. (Supported by NSF)
TraceSorb is a disruptive, high-performance air filtration solution capable of rapid and efficient removal of toxic and odorous chemicals from air. Compared with traditional adsorbents, TraceSorb is low-cost, exceptionally effective towards trace toxins in air, maintaining excellent permeability, and more importantly, it will change colors when it expires. As an air filtration solution, TraceSorb targets markets ranging from consumer to high-end industrial application, including pet odor removal, military air protection, international space station, semiconductor cleanroom, fuel cells, etc. Our media have been successfully used in leading chip manufacturer, as well as residential consumers put out by the odor from their pets.

Team: Weihua Zheng

Contact: Weihua Zheng, Serionix, Inc.
Office: 217-819-0349 | Mobile: 217-819-0349

VitreOx Anti-Fog

SiO2 Nanotech 
At SiO2 Nanotech, we developed VitreOxTM, an effective, long-lasting anti-fog that has outperformed every anti-fog product in the market, including a $100 M medical device company. Fogging is a daily, persistent problem in surgeries, protective eyewear, gauges, and lenses that ultimately leads to safety hazards. The VitreOxTM anti-fog is a liquid that is easily applied and cured on anything from glass to polycarbonate. The anti-fog is spread onto the lens, allowed to dry, and it is ready to use. The anti-fog can last from hours to years, depending on care. Unlike our competitors, we do not require awkward accessories, heat, evacuation, or reapplication to eliminate fogging. Further, we do not use hazardous, toxic compounds that may irritate the eyes and skin that cannot be disposed in the drain. Our VitreOx™ is biocompatible, biodegradable, and non-toxic. Despite being non-toxic, the VitreOx™ anti-fog also acts as a barrier against mold, bacteria, and virus, ideal for the medical and biological hazardous protective eyewear. The VitreOx™ anti-fog is an effective, long-lasting, non-toxic anti-fog that is now commercially available. 

Team: Clarizza Watson

Contact: Clarizza Watson, SiO2 Nanotech
Office: 602-565-3447 | Mobile: 602-565-3447

Porous Materials

ThruPore Technologies, LLC (Supported by NSF)
ThruPore’s Founders have developed better performing heterogeneous catalysts by controlling the pore size of the support structure. This control enables ThruPore to have 50%+ more accessible surface area. With more surface area, the precious metal component of the catalyst can be better dispersed throughout the support. ThruPore has experience working with the most common support structures – carbon and silica, as well as several precious metals – palladium and platinum.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Franchessa Sayler, Martin Bakker, John Currie

Contact: Franchessa Sayler, ThruPore Technologies, LLC 
Mobile: 205-657-0714


UC Berkeley Design for Nanomanufacturing Lab 
Nelumbo has developed OMNIPHOBE, a thin thermally conductive nanocoating with higher water and oil shedding performance than any current products or technologies. We utilize a dirt-cheap dip-coat process to apply OMNIPHOBE to any geometry on any scale, imparting anti-corrosive, anti-microbial and self-cleaning properties by maintaining a permanently dry surface. Our first target market is Air Conditioning, but this technology is also immediately applicable in the Energy and Chemical Processing industries. 

Team: Liam Berryman, Lance Brockway

Contact: Liam Berryman, UC Berkeley Design for Nanomanufacturing Lab

Advanced Graphitic Anode

Urbix Resources, LLC 
Urbix Resources, LLC is an emerging carbon processor based in Phoenix, Arizona. With a commercially accessible supply of large flake graphite, Urbix Resources develops proprietary graphitic anodes to supply the lithium-ion battery industry. Utilizing highly enriched graphite, Urbix anode materials possess above average energy charge rates, discharge rates, and mAh/g capacity. Focusing on innovations related to graphene, Urbix Resources is poised to supply the North American boom in renewable energy infrastructure, and energy storage. Located just 1,000 miles south of the Tesla Gigafactory, Urbix Resources will be a major contender for supplying the lithium-ion battery market. 

Team: Adam Small, Nicolas Cuevas, Sergio Aguirre, Javier Ayala, Palash Gangopadhyay

Contact: Adam Small, Urbix Resources, LLC
Office: 480-205-9907

Nanofiber Chemical Detectors

Vaporsens is commercializing chemical detectors based on nanofiber sensor technology for the defense, security, first-responder, environmental, and consumer products markets. Nanofiber sensors excel at detecting explosives, chemical warfare agents (CWA), toxic industrial chemicals (TIC), volatile organic compounds (VOC), illegal drugs, environmental contaminants, and much more. The major benefits of Vaporsens's nanofiber chemical detectors include sensitivity, selectivity, rapid response, small form factor, low power consumption, simple user interface, no calibration, and low cost.
Watch a video of the demonstration »

Team: Doug Later, Ben Bunes, Ling Zang

Contact: Doug Later, Vaporsens, Inc.
Mobile: 801-557-3557

STEP—A Size Tunable Enrichment Platform

ViroLock Technologies, Inc. 
The product consists of a Virolock module coupled to a PCR system. Virolock will utilize disease specific disposable cartridges able to trap, isolate, and concentrate the desired viruses in clinical samples. PCR with Virolock technology will be 100 times more sensitive than any existing PCR technology alone. The Virolock module and cartridges will be able to process most of the viruses causing severe infectious diseases and will be 100% compatible with commercial PCR machines. 

Team: Nestor Perea Lopez, Mauricio Terrones, Yin-Ting Yeh, Siyang Zheng 

Contact: Mauricio Terrones, The Pennsylvania State University
Office: 814-867-2799