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UTSA honors researchers with Innovation Awards

UTSA honors researchers with Innovation Awards

Bernard Arulanandam with 2018 Innovator of the Year, John Quarles

(Dec. 5, 2018) – The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Office of Commercialization and Innovation (OCI) honored original faculty, staff and student achievements at the university’s sixth annual Innovation Awards today. Forty-two members of the research community were celebrated for their contribution and the successful commercialization of novel ideas and inventions.

The culmination of the awards was the selection of John Quarles, UTSA associate professor of computer science as the 2018 Innovator of the Year. The award is based on a number of factors including technology disclosures, patent filings, issued patents, licenses, and overall innovation and ideation.

Quarles uses cutting edge technology to create video games and other devices to help people in need. His interests include virtual reality, mixed reality, augmented reality, serious games, 3D user interfaces, interactive computer graphics, human-computer interaction, and modeling and simulation.

Over his career, he has developed a world-wide reputation as a leader in the use of augmented and virtual reality for medical training, stem education, exercise, and physical and cognitive therapies. He has widely published in the fields of augmented and virtual reality and is recognized as one of the world's leading experts in the use of this technology. He has also received nearly a million dollars of research funding, most coming from the National Science Foundation.

As a co-founder of MedCognition, Quarles integrated the latest augmented reality and computing technology into a patient simulator called PerSim™. Portable and affordable, PerSim™ is a combination of proprietary software and off-the-shelf hardware that allows first responders to be trained in a number of medical emergency scenarios.

At today’s Innovation Awards, UTSA also recognized 41 members of its research community in three additional categories, reflecting the university’s success at commercializing new knowledge and technologies.

“These awards recognize the UTSA research community’s accomplishments and adding to the knowledge enterprise. Our goal is to foster a research-intensive environment where faculty and students can flourish and their work and discoveries have meaningful impact,” said Bernard Arulanandam, interim UTSA vice president for research, economic development, and knowledge enterprise.

OCI provides UTSA students, faculty and staff with commercialization assistance and nurtures university-industry partnerships. OCI services include intellectual property management and licensing, proof-of-concept development, new venture incubation, entrepreneurial training, and policies and procedures that accelerate and ease the transition of intellectual property and technologies from the university to industry.

“Our office helps prepare scientists and researchers find the best commercial use of their technology. By highlighting the commercialization success of the UTSA community, we hope it serves to inspire more people on campus to cultivate and pursue their applied and entrepreneurial ideas,” said Christine Burke, director of Commercialization and Tech Transfer.

UTSA’s 2018 Innovation Award Winners

Recipients of issued intellectual property
This first category recognizes recipients of issued patents, trademarks and/or copyrights. The following is the full list of 31 patent, copyright, or trademark recipients, with seven patents issued this past year.

C. Mauli Agrawal, Steven R. Bailey, Jordan Kaufmann
9,849,007 | United States
Scaffold System for Tissue Repair
>> Expendable scaffold that serves as a temporary template that allows damaged tissue to be rebuilt

C. Mauli Agrawal, Steven R. Bailey, Jordan Kaufmann
6,321,691 | Japan
Scaffold System for Tissue Repair
>> Expendable scaffold that serves as a temporary template that allows damaged tissue to be rebuilt

Arturo Ayon, Cory Hallam
9,829,396 | United States
Surface-Mounted Monitoring System
Detects the presence of both ordinary and excessive loads on a surface, and provides real-time or near real-time trending data

Brent Nowak, Jayson Aydelotte
10,029,086 | United States
Method and system for an adaptive coupling device for medical conduits
>>A device that allows the connection of medical tubing with the features of a safe disconnect to prevent and prevention of leaking.

Sos Agaian, Clara M. Mosquera-Lopez, Aaron Greenblatt
10,055,551 | United States
Systems and Methods for Quantitative Analysis of Histopathology Images
Using Multiclassifier Ensemble Schemes
>>Software to automatically review and grade cancer biopsy images.

Arturo Ponce-Pedraza, Miguel Jose-Yacaman, J. Jesus Velazquez-Salazar, Francisco Javier Gonzalez, John Eder Sanchez, Fernando Mendoza Santoyo
10,060,799 | United States
Self-Assembled Nanostructure Bolometers
>> A fabrication of self-assembled hybrid materials (metal/semiconductor) that can detect infrared, heat or radiation.

Rolando E. Vega, Hariharan Krishnaswami, Walter Richardson, Michael Cervantes
TXu002079758 | United States Copyright
UTSA Sky Imager Software v1.0
>> Low-cost computing and camera system that provides for real-time image acquisition and processing of all-sky images to improve solar forecasting/predicting future solar irradiance.

J. Brian Moroney, Michael Sullivan
TXu2082382 | United States Copyright
>> Software that allows universities or other large institutions to manage all of their safety equipment, track inspections and keep track of hazards.

Larry Sjelin, Garett Fox, Josef Klein, Travis Sjelin, Gregory White, Donovan Medina, Noah Bonaguidi, Julina Macy
5,500,303 | United States Trademark
Cyber Threat Defender
A collectable card game that teaches cybersecurity

Taeg Nishimoto
D818,183  | United States
Buckram Lightsource Container
>> A series of hanging lighting fixtures made of sustainable mesh Buckram fabric that offers an alternative way for indoor illumination.

Licensing revenue
This second category recognizes innovators with optioned or licensed technology that has generated returns for the university.

Doug Frantz
New Chiral Phosphite Ligands for Asymmetric Catalysis

Doug Frantz, Hector Ruben Aguilar
Isoxazole treatments for diabetes
>>Novel drug treatment for diabetes that induces synthesis and secretion of insulin from pancreatic beta cells.

I-Corps™ recognition
The final category highlights faculty, staff, students, and team mentors who have participated in the National Science Foundation I-Corps™ program. This accelerator program takes a mentored research team through the customer discovery process so they can better understand both what is needed in the marketplace, and what a business will need to do for it to be successful.

Rehabilit8-TwAS, an advanced treadmill for rehabilitation
Amir Jafari | Principal Investigator
Ernesto Hernandez Hinojosa | Entrepreneurial Lead
Nicholas Ramos | Entrepreneurial Lead
Andrei Zorilescu | Mentor

Ridabug, a targeted control of insect populations
Gold Darr Hood | Principal Investigator
Richard Leach | Technical Lead
Nicolas Ballesteros Velasco | Entrepreneurial Lead
Christine Burke | Mentor

Sarah Hada

Learn more about the UTSA Innovation Awards.

Learn more about commercialization of intellectual property and technology transfer at UTSA.

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The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.

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The University of Texas at San Antonio, a Hispanic Serving Institution situated in a global city that has been a crossroads of peoples and cultures for centuries, values diversity and inclusion in all aspects of university life. As an institution expressly founded to advance the education of Mexican Americans and other underserved communities, our university is committed to promoting access for all. UTSA, a premier public research university, fosters academic excellence through a community of dialogue, discovery and innovation that embraces the uniqueness of each voice.