Article

Utah Innovation Awards

Inventing a Better Tomorrow

Presented by Stoel Rives LLP & Utah Technology Council

April 8, 2013

The E-Thotic is a stabilizing device that is used in place of a traditional cast. It is fitted on the child’s arm before it is pinned in the E-Fix, and stabilized immediately afterward. This reduces procedure time and cost by removing the need to apply a cast. E-Thotic also features a closure system that allows it to expand or contract to accommodate swelling and healing. 

Neural Interface System by Blackrock Microsystems

There are more than one million limb amputations in the United States every year—an average of one every 30 seconds. Prosthetic limbs have been around for centuries, but have always required physical manipulation to function.

Now, thanks in part to the Neural Interface System, it’s possible for amputees to operate prosthetic limbs just as they operated the limbs they lost: by thinking.

The Neural Interface System includes a sensor about the size of a pacemaker, which is surgically implanted in the user’s brain. The device reads signals in the brain indicating movement and wirelessly transmits to a robotic prosthetic limb worn by the user. The limb (which is not made by Blackrock), responds by moving in much the same way a biological limb would.

The implantable, wireless system is not currently commercially available, but a wired version for clinical research is being produced.

Slyder by Liyen Inc.

Liyen CEO Chris Ciancone has suffered from asthma all his life, but he also loves to be active in the outdoors. Those two facts have often come into conflict, which is why he created Slyder, a combination asthma inhaler/spacer that is compact, easy to carry and more attractively designed than other spacers on the market.

A spacer is a chamber or tube used together with an inhaler to provide a better distribution of asthma medicine to the lungs than an inhaler alone. The problem is that most spacers are large and conspicuous, meaning that asthma sufferers, especially young people concerned about their image, rarely carry their spacers with them.

Slyder overcomes those problems to increase the likelihood that asthma sufferers will have an inhaler and spacer available when needed. It resembles and is roughly the same size as a smartphone, making it less likely to draw attention. Also, because Slyder includes both inhaler and spacer, there is one less object to carry.

 

Computer Hardware & Electrical Devices Finalists

Compact Surveillance Radar by SpotterRF

When it comes to surveillance, there is not much that fills that gap between large, expensive radars and smaller infrared cameras. However, SpotterRF’s Compact Surveillance Radar (CSR) is bringing a compact, lightweight, inexpensive, user-friendly, energy-efficient CSR to the market to fill that need.

The CSR automates the job of monitoring cameras for wide-area surveillance with a single CSR unit and infrared camera; the system has a 20-acre line of sight. This is done at a cost of $40,000, far less than other options, and only requires 30 minutes of training. The radar units come in four sizes, weigh less than 4 pounds and use only 10 watts of energy.

SpotterRF says having such low-cost, effective surveillance could help protect much of the nation’s infrastructure by eliminating gaps in perimeter security. By making the Compact Surveillance Radar available for civilian uses, the company hopes to provide even better security.

Desktop Cloud Computing Appliance by V3 Systems

V3 Systems is changing the world of virtual Windows desktops. The company spent two years in research and development focused specifically on making the best end-user experience in virtual desktops. The result of those two years is the Desktop Cloud Computing Appliance.

Other virtual desktop programs from traditional vendors can perform well in a pilot program but quickly degrade when fully deployed. When scaled up, the bottleneck slows performance for all users, and the management software required to maintain such systems usually needs senior IT staff to operate it.

The Desktop Cloud Computing Appliance is easily scalable and guaranteed to be two to eight times faster than a physical desktop. The company also gives customers the flexibility to deliver between 25 and 400 virtual desktops per appliance to best suit company needs. V3’s virtual desktop solution also provides predictable up-front and future costs for companies.

Beamforming Microphone Array by ClearOne

Many companies still use sets of cumbersome, unsightly microphones that don’t reduce outside noise for their conferencing. So ClearOne came up with a solution. The Beamforming Microphone Array uses 24 microphone elements that form six beams to create full sound coverage in an area. This also allows the pickup pattern to be steered toward participants to reduce unwanted noise in group situations. 

The Beamforming Microphone Array offers wider coverage, while allowing the speaker to be farther away from the mic than with other systems. Advanced noise reduction and echo cancellation features make it even easier to get clear sound.

Unlike other systems, the Beamforming Microphone Array can be mounted on the table, wall or ceiling, and its sleek design fits into any environment. It can also be combined with one or two other units to cover even greater distance if needed.

Honorable Mention:

Xi3 Microserv3r (Model X7a) by Xi3 Corporation

 

 

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