Four projects led by College of Engineering faculty – Perena Gouma, Judit Puskas, Jonathan Song and Alper Yilmaz – will receive funding via The Ohio State University Accelerator Awards.
The Accelerator Awards program is designed to spur the advancement of cutting-edge innovations from The Ohio State University into the marketplace. It provides grants of up to $150,000 to support external validation and de-risking activities to demonstrate commercial viability of a technology with the intent to license to an Ohio-based startup. Administered through the Keenan Center for Entrepreneurship, the program is funded by the university with matching funds from the Ohio Third Frontier Technology Validation and Startup Fund.
“The recent Accelerator Award cycle saw another group of exciting technologies. We are delighted to be able to offer this critical, early-stage funding to our PIs, allowing them to perform proof of concept studies or create prototypes to quickly demonstrate the effectiveness of their technologies,” said Cheryl Turnbull, senior director of the Keenan Center for Entrepreneurship at Ohio State. “By performing more of this work prior to a license agreement, we hope to increase the value and level of startup creation at Ohio State.”
Since the program launched in 2015, the Accelerator Awards have distributed over $5 million to 78 unique projects. These projects have led to 22 startup companies.
Judit Puskas, Professor, Food, Agricultural & Biological Engineering
“BUCKEYE” COVID Mask
Current face masks have limitations, and lower compliance has been an issue. This project is developing a face mask to address these problems – discomfort, moisture absorption and impeded breathing – by prototyping a recyclable and comfortable face mask that outperforms current disposable masks, while having the filtration efficiency of KN95 masks. Funding will be used to fabricate prototype masks and test them with users at meat processing facilities, as well as de-risk scaled-up manufacture of the material required to make the masks.