Three NCIIA teams in running for MassChallenge $1 million

Three NCIIA grantee teams are finalists at MassChallenge 2011, and will compete with 23 other teams for a share of $1 million. The teams are:

Sanergy, 2010 Sustainable Vision grantee from MIT
Sanergy makes it profitable to provide sanitation services in urban slums. This team has designed, constructed and implemented a pilot modular low-cost sanitation facility customized for the residents of two slums in Nairobi, Kenya. Two low-cost technologies are the centerpiece: a prefabricated ferro-cement toilet and a bicycle-powered exhaustion pump for pit latrines. These technologies are combined with a micro-franchised network of sanitation centers, low-cost waste collection infrastructure, and a centralized processing facility that converts waste into biogas, electricity, and fertilizer that is sold commercially.

SmarterShade (Lono LLC), 2007 E-Team from the University of Notre Dame
SmarterShade makes it possible to electronically darken a window with the flip of a switch. Using a remote control, the customer can adjust the level of tinting from clear to opaque. SolarShade itself is a lightweight, semi-rigid sheet of plastic made from offset planes of polarized material. The sheet can be manufactured to fit into any existing window track or frame, right over the window itself. The team has since incorporated as Lono LLC.

Therapeutic Systems, 2007 E-Team from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Therapeutic System’s Vayu vest is a portable sensory solution for children with autism, so they can participate in life more fully. Deep Pressure Touch Stimulation (DPTS) is a method of treating people with mental illness that involves applying firm pressure to the chest, much like the feeling of a hug. DPTS is most often applied passively, using simple weighted vests and toys. This E-Team is developing a DPTS system with more user control: the inflatable Vayu system can be inserted into any off-the-shelf vest and can safely apply a range of pressure, helping people cope with their anxiety.

MassChallenge seeks to identify and accelerate high potential new busnesses from around the US. Last year, two NCIIA E-Teams, Sproxil and OsmoPure, made the final, with OsmoPure winning $100,000!