ECE News Story
ECE Students, Alumnus Among UM $50K Business Plan Competition Winners
The Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech) announced the winners of the 2008 University of Maryland $50K Business Plan Competition.
Winners were chosen among eight finalist teams in three categories during an event on May 9. Each team gave investor presentations to a team of distinguished judges.
Randolph Ballard, an electrical engineering student, was a member of the winning team in the Undergraduate Student category for the LDTech team that is developing the Liquid Desiccant Waterfall (LDW), a visually appealing, low-energy dehumidifier that pulls moisture from the interior of a house and releases it outside in the atmosphere. The technology provides comfort, cost savings and energy savings, as well as a reduction in mold, mildew, bacteria, and dust mites, in a beautiful and dramatic symbol of green technology.
Dr. Mehdi Kalantari, a faculty researcher and program director of the Master's in Telecommunications program, and a 2005 ECE Ph.D. alumnus advised by Prof. Mark Shayman (ECE/ISR), placed second overall in the Alumni category. His business project, Resensys Inc., is aimed at developing remote, wireless, distributed sensors that persistantly monitor the structural health of bridges, massive commercial and residential buildings, and other civil infrastructures. Resensys’ sensors are easy to install, ultra-energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly.
Here are the complete results for the competition:
Faculty and Graduate Student Division:
Undergraduate Student Division:
Judges for the event were Henry Ahn, Program Manager, Technology Funding Programs, Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO); Warren Citrin, Co-founder and Board Member, Gloto Corp.; Ray Dizon, Managing Director, Maryland Venture Fund; Wei-Wu He, General Partner and Co-founder of Emerging Technology Partners LLC; Mark Kass, Member, Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo; Karl Renner, Principal, Fish & Richardson P.C.
Sponsors for the event included: Fish & Richardson P.C.; Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo; Maryland Technology Development Corporation; Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development.
The UM $50K Business Plan Competition promotes the commercialization of innovative ideas and University-created technologies by offering faculty, students, and alumni prizes for the best new venture plans. The competition emphasizes learning by offering one-to-one coaching for finalists, as well as the experience of presenting ideas to an experienced panel of judges.
The UM $50K Business Plan Competition has historically awarded a total of $385,000 in prizes to faculty, students, and alumni to launch innovative new ventures. Companies active in the Competition have generated millions in revenues, grants and awards. Past winners include Chesapeake PERL Inc., AnthroTronix Inc., Affiliate Classroom, and Squarespace Inc.
May 15, 2008