Third annual competition recognizes forward-thinking IoT technologies

by student engineers

PHOENIX--(BUSINESS WIRE)--lt;a href="" target="_blank"gt;$AVTlt;/agt; lt;a href="" target="_blank"gt;#competitionlt;/agt;--The future of innovation is stronger than ever, and companies are

continuously embracing creativity and supporting newfound ideas. In line

with this trend, Avnet

(Nasdaq: AVT),

a leading global technology solutions company, and Arizona State

University’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, today awarded Strella

Biotechnology with $100,000 as the winning team of the third annual ASU

Innovation Open (ASUio), held at ASU’s Tempe Campus on Friday, Feb. 1.

The team, led by Katherine Sizov from University of Pennsylvania,

demonstrated its biosensing platforms that measure fruit ripeness by

calculating ethylene gas production. This provides actionable data to

packers and distributors to reduce food waste and increase fruit

quality. The technology is already in use by apple packers in Washington

and Pennsylvania.

The ASUio is the largest student venture competition in the southwestern

United States. University students from across the nation and from all

disciplines participate in a series of three competitive rounds to

showcase the power of entrepreneurship in tackling the world’s most

challenging problems. Avnet’s continued support for the competition

underscores its commitment to guiding today’s ideas into tomorrow’s

technology. In addition to the $100,000 prize, Avnet offers their

valuable global design and engineering expertise to the grand prize

winner to optimize their solution.

“Each finalist exemplifies the creativity, talent and initiative that is

at the core of both the ASU Innovation Open and the entrepreneurial

spirit that is so prevalent in technology,” said Bill Amelio, Avnet CEO.

“This competition is the perfect example of how Avnet’s ecosystem can

help bring amazing ideas to life like the ones presented by these young

designers. We are proud to recognize Strella Biotechnology with the

grand prize, and we eagerly anticipate the impact all of these young

entrepreneurs will have on the world of technology.”

During the competition, teams showcased their business ventures powered

by innovative hardware and software technologies. In addition to Strella

Biotechnology, the other four 2019 ASUio finalists included:

  • Cloud
    , by Jack Roswell and Oleksiy Zhuk from Brown
    University, is an aerial imaging and data analytics venture in the
    agri-tech sector that is dedicated to reducing food waste. The company
    collects ultra-high definition images taken from manned aircraft to
    scout evidence of crop disease and advise farmers to act.

  • Infinite
    , by Maher Damak from the Massachusetts Institute of
    Technology, has developed technology to capture large amounts of pure
    water from the evaporative losses of cooling towers in power plants.
    This cooling apparatus has already been installed at a power plant on
    the MIT campus, and other industry leaders plan to incorporate the
    idea to recycle water for reuse in their cooling systems.

  • Solemate
    , by Surabhi Kalyan and Kristine Khieu from
    University of California, San Diego, makes a smart shoe insole that
    optimizes lower-extremity rehabilitation following orthopedic surgery
    by measuring weight applied and providing real-time feedback. The
    smart sole can improve recovery time and help prevent serious
    complications that may occur following patient discharge.

  • Soundskrit,
    by Sahil Gupta from McGill University, leverages years of research in
    biomimetic microphone design to develop multi-directional
    Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) microphones to significantly
    improve audio capture. This velocity microphone technology dynamically
    tracks and listens to multiple inputs and improves years of stagnant
    technology in audio capture.

“The Phoenix metropolitan area is quickly becoming a technology and

entrepreneurship hub, and at the Fulton Schools, we’re excited to be one

of the catalysts of this wave of innovation and creativity,” says Kyle

Squires, dean of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. “Through the

ASU Innovation Open, we’re bolstering new ideas from ventures like

Strella Biotechnology and the other competitors who are all on course to

become the technology leaders of tomorrow.”

In addition to Avnet’s $100,000 grand prize, additional sponsors for the

2019 ASUio provide support for the winners and finalists, including:

Zero Mass Water, SRP, ON Semiconductor, Sitewire, Board of Regents, and

Roambotics. All finalists will be considered for inclusion in the Avnet

Innovation Lab, a collaboration with ASU that attracts some of the

brightest entrepreneurs and provides funding, access to industry

experts, and mentorship from experienced entrepreneurs so they can

accelerate their next-generation technologies.

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About Avnet

Avnet is a global technology solutions provider with an extensive

ecosystem delivering design, product, marketing and supply chain

expertise for customers at every stage of the product lifecycle. We

transform ideas into intelligent solutions, reducing the time, cost and

complexities of bringing products to market. For nearly a century, Avnet

has helped its customers and suppliers around the world realize the

transformative possibilities of technology. Learn more about Avnet at


Media Contacts

Maureen O’Leary



Jamie Ernst

Brodeur Partners, for Avnet