BY MIKE WILLIAMS
Rice News staff
A team of new Rice University graduates took second place and a $7,000 prize in the prestigious IShow competition sponsored by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
Team Zikomo was one of two groups of Rice students among 10 chosen for the fourth annual nationwide competition, held June 11 at the society's convention in Dallas.
"We believe this product has vast potential because of the number of places worldwide that don't have electrical power and where IV fluid and medications need to be delivered in precise amounts," said Maria Oden, professor in the practice of engineering education and director of the OEDK. Oden will discuss the concept with health care providers in Swaziland, Botswana and Malawi this summer while interns with Rice's Beyond Traditional Borders (BTB) program refine the device.
Oden said two members of the team, Cui and Carstens, worked at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Malawi on behalf of BTB last summer and saw the need for their device firsthand. "They saw how critically important this is and shared that with their teammates, who really got engaged solving the problem."
She said the team included bioengineering and mechanical engineering majors who employed their skills "in a way that any single discipline might not have been able to do as effectively."
Oden and Renata Ramos, lecturer in bioengineering; Tracy Volz, senior lecturer in professional communication in the George R. Brown School of Engineering; Kim Kimmey, lecturer in communications at the Jones Graduate School of Business; and Thomas Kraft, director of technology ventures development for Rice Alliance, mentored the team.
Team MAVerick -- Rice graduates Rhodes Coffey, Chris Cromer, David McMahon and Stephen Vargo Williams -- also competed with a device to harvest energy for unmanned micro air vehicles.
This year's top prize of $10,000 went to a team from Johns Hopkins University, which demonstrated a port to provide access to blood in dialysis patients and reduce the number of surgeries these patients require. The HEMOVA team also took third in the Rice Business Plan Competition life sciences category in April.
The only other Rice students to ever participate in IShow, the PRIME team, won first prize in 2009 for its hand-strength measurement device.
BTB sponsored Team Zikomo through a grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Rice University HomepageBrown School of EngineeringRice Center for Engineering Leadership
Rice 360˚ Institute for Global Health
Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen - Rice University
6100 Main Street MS 390 | Houston, Texas | 77005