Four teams of engineering students were honored recently with D.E. Crow Innovation Prizes in the spring. The competition was begun in 2011 by professor emeritus and former Senior Vice President of Pratt & Whitney’s Engineering organization, David E. Crow, and aims to help engineering students turn their entrepreneurial inspirations into a marketable product, by awarding seed funds to students with a strong idea and a sound business plan.
The 2012 award recipients are:
1st Prize: A Portable Water Purification System
Team: Saeid Zanganeh (ECE), Navid Zanjani (ME)
Summary: The objective of this study was to fabricate a low priced water purification system using a new morphology of zinc oxide to help people who do not have access to a safe and permanent water purification system.
2nd Prize: Energy Star Retrofit
Team: Nishang Gupta (ME, BUS), Dana Boyer (CEE)
Summary: Using small appliance retail stores that offer appliance removal services to customers, the team streamlines the entire appliance repair process, saving labor time and also – as part of the repair process – retrofitting appliances with Energy Star certified parts to reduce US energy consumption by 600 million kWh annually.
3rd Prize: Clamp and Pivot Sawstop (CAPS) System
Team: Stephen Harmon (ME) Sam Masciulli (ME)
Summary: In commercial building projects, window frames are fabricated in a machine shop and – due to existing practices – result in significant labor and material costs. The CAPS system will eliminate non-scrap drop pieces from the operation and the need for a working stockpile, replacing the time consuming and arduous job of handling drop pieces with the quick and easy lift-and-pivot operation of the CAPS system.
3rd Prize: Symbolhound
Team: Thomas Fedtmose (BUS), David Crane (CSE)
This project entails a search engine specifically designed for programmers that enable searching for non-alphanumeric characters on web searches.
At Pratt & Whitney, Dr. Crow oversaw the design, development, validation and certification of the company’s large commercial engines, military engines and rocket products; and led research and development of advanced technology systems to meet future aircraft requirements. He was elected to the prestigious National Academy of Engineering for his leadership in the engineering design of high-bypass-ratio gas turbine engines for aircraft.