Beall, Butterworth Student Design Competition Winners Announced

Beall/Butterworth student competitionsJune 1, 2016 - The third consecutive Beall and Butterworth engineering and computer sciences student design competitions concluded May 19 with product demonstrations and final judging. When total points were tallied, Tag Team was named first-place winner in the Beall Student Design Competition in Engineering, which focused on hardware products. The team’s winning entry is a small Bluetooth low energy (BLE) device, called Tag, used in conjunction with a smartphone to help users secure their belongings and also send distress signals to emergency contacts. Tag can be attached easily to a keychain or other personal belongings, including briefcases, backpacks, bikes, wallets, laptops and even pets. The BLE device piggybacks on the phone’s GPS system to upload a tagged item’s location to the cloud. This allows users to track their possessions in real-time from any phone/desktop, leverage the crowd-GPS network to find stolen or lost items and even alert emergency contacts in cases of distress.

Tag Team, comprised of engineering student Khwaja Hassan Ahmad and ICS students Ali Shahbaz and Neeraj Kumar, won $7,500.

Other big winners in the Beall Student Design Competition in Engineering were second-place finishers Red Lion Robotics and third-place CeleriBio. Red Lion Robotics – consisting of engineering students Yasemin Sarigul-Klijn, Peter Wang and Brandon Tsuge – won $5,000 for its accessible tools for physical rehabilitation and assistance, while CeleriBio, a rapid and quantitative diagnostic test for bloodstream infections and antibiotic resistance, won $2,500. Team members include Samueli School students Sean Freeman, Nikki Koe, Louai Labanieh, Binh Le and Sadaf Mirnia.

Twenty-six teams entered the hardware section of the competition. In that category, semifinalists included: Adipo Therapeutics, BioDesign, Controllable, Curaflow, Datalore, K9 Biowalk, Lightswitch, Sher Biomedical and SYNTR Health Tech.

The Butterworth Product Development Competition, which focused on software and systems, also selected three winners: Sonder VR, a virtual reality therapy experience for those with Autism Spectrum Disorder; WeGroove, an app that uses smartphone sensors to play music that matches the body’s activities; and Munchies, a mobile platform that provides college students with opportunities to dine in homes, order take-out, share stories and enjoy authentic homemade cuisine.

Both competitions were open to all UCI students, and were judged by distinguished panels of industry experts. They were launched in 2014 to encourage students to create new technologies or design solutions with commercialization potential.