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Avenda Healths Brittany Berry-Pusey during her 2019 SPIE Startup Challenges winning pitch

Forty-two photonics business startups from 14 countries will participate in the 2020 SPIE Startup Challenge semi-finals held during SPIE Photonics West on 4 February. On 5 February, 12 finalists will compete for cash prizes from Jenoptik as well as for business support from Challenge partners and sponsors. Prizes include $10,000 for first place as well as $5,000 in products from Edmund Optics; $5,000 for second place; and $2,500 for third place. In addition, Early Stage Entrepreneurship Travel Grants have been awarded to three of the semi-finalists.

The SPIE Startup Challenge, which showcases new businesses, products, and technologies that are addressing critical needs with photonics, is in its 10th year, and is enabled by Founding Partner Jenoptik; Strategic Partner LDV Capital; Lead Sponsors Edmund Optics, MKS Instruments, Hamamatsu, and B&W Tek CEO Sean Wang; and Supporting Sponsors the National Science Foundation and the Luminate Accelerator. Judges include venture capitalists and business-development experts who vet the applicants for their business case, financial case, and competitive advantages. Transformational innovations this year include neurologic therapies, single-cell imaging and printing, drug discovery, rapid cancer detection, advanced manufacturing, quantum computing, and hostile-environment communications.

"Over the past ten years, we have seen many startups gain traction and flourish," says SPIE Fellow and Jenoptik Optical Systems President Jay Kumler. "This year, the applicants are more impressive than ever. The SPIE Startup Challenge is unleashing the entrepreneurial spirit of our photonics industry."

Both the semi-finals and finals of this exciting pitching competition are open to anyone with a free Photonics West exhibition registration. Semi-finalists will also be demoing their products throughout the day on Tuesday, 4 February, as part of the SPIE Venture Summit.

The Semi-finalists' will cover four tracks: Pre-Seed Stage Deep Tech, Pre-Seed Stage Healthcare, Seed Stage Deep Tech, and Seed Stage Healthcare.

2020 SPIE Startup Challenge semi-finalists:

Pre-Seed stage, Healthcare

BioPixS aims to save in millions by reducing unnecessary clinical trials and ethical approval process. Nurturing a new era in BioPhotonics Standards.
Sanathana Konugolu Venkata Sekar

Conzeb Limited
Conzeb develops ultrafast optical imaging technologies, aimed at revolutionising single-cell imaging assay for cancer screening and drug discovery.
Andy K. S. Lau

diapatchTM – a noninvasive, wearable patch that allows for better detection of high-risk biomarkers leading to malignant gynecologic cancer health.
Eydis Lima

Digiteyez Technologies LLC
The future of global eyecare
Brandon Zimmerman

Harmonigenic Corporation
OPTIM (Optical Prediction of Time Interval to Metastasis) will predict cancer recurrence, optimal Rx, & personalized outcomes from the initial biopsy
Robert Hill

Kilo Medical Solutions
Brise-Solette is a system that attaches to incubators in the NICU and controls the light environment to improve health outcomes for premature infants.
Kashyap Venuthurupalli & Joshna Seelam

LASE Innovation
Commercializing nano-to-micron sized particle lasers with billions of spectral barcodes for massively multiplexed tagging and imaging of single cells
Sheldon Kwok

McFocal Bioimaging
McFocal Bioimaging offers a multiplexing confocal fluroescence lifetime imaging microscope for drug discovery as well as precision medicine.
Qiyin Fang

Odin Technologies, LLC
Odin is developing a wearable diagnostic that assesses extremity hemodynamics; allowing caregivers to identify perfusion injuries and complications.
Steven Hansen

PediaMetrix Inc
PediaMetrix enables parents to detect, monitor, and treat Flat Head Syndrome at the point of care using patented AI-enabled mobile application.
Fereshteh Aalamifar

Summit Biomedical Imaging
Targeted Cancer Diagnostics
Andrew Riley

Pre-Seed stage, Deep Tech

We sell a new way to produce bio-inspired antireflective glass with the use of laser light. We bring nature's ingenuity on surface engineering.
Emmanuel Stratakis

Devali Inc
On a mission to save lives, Devali's Oumen Industrial recognizes pre-symptomatic heatstroke, gas exposure and more from the comfort of a work boot.
Irene Brinker

Kosmik Energy, Inc.
We are focusing the sun’s rays into optical fiber to enable an increase in yield while mitigating production cost in vertical farming systems.
Ricardo Ramirez

AI-automated, non-contact, single-cell micromanipulation system that is accessible to every biologist in the world.
Rich Zapata Rosas

Momentum Optics
Affordable custom optics. Rapidly delivered.
Jeremy Goeckeritz

Nanograss Photonics
We reduce $-per-bit of information for hyperscale data centers by leveraging our opto-plasmonic technology for communications beyond 5G.
Pouya Dianat

ORCA Computing
ORCA uses proprietary, optical fibre-based technology as a new approach towards cheaper, more scalable and reconfigurable quantum computers.
Richard Murray

QLM Technology Ltd
Natural gas leaks are a major source of global greenhouse gas. Quantum gas imagers to see the leaks will help save billions of dollars…and our planet.
Murray Reed

Specto develops next-generation miniaturized spectrometers to measure fundamental mechanical properties for life sciences and sensing applications
Giuseppe Antonacci

Vyir Inc
Vyir Inc's Optical Infrared Imager will result in the technological and commercial realization of truly low-cost, high-performance infrared cameras.
James Scholtz

Seed stage, Healthcare

Adiuvo Diagnostics
Non Invasive, Label-free detection and classification of pathogens on wounds in real-time
Geethanjali Radhakrishnan

AiDx Medical
A reliable, smart, optical instrument for automated, affordable, field-compatible malaria detection. For quick and high quality malaria screening.
Temitope Agbana

C. Light Technologies, Inc.
C. Light Technologies is an neurotech and AI company that has created a 10-second retinal eye-tracking scan that can objectively assess brain health.
Christy Sheehy

Eysz, Inc.
Leave no seizure undetected.
Rachel Kuperman

iLoF - Intelligent Lab on Fiber
iLoF is enabling a new era of personalized medicine, by providing photonics and AI screening tools for the epidemic of our century: Alzheimer's.
Joana Paiva

OptoGenTech GmbH
In our optical Cochlea Implant, light stimulates neurons of the ear, allowing deaf to hear with a frequency resolution superior to the electrical CI.
Ulrich Schwarz

Advanced laser technology for precise cells printing and regenerative medicine applications.
Ioanna Zergioti

The Rubitect Assessment System (RAS) is an optical skin health and wellness tool for diagnosis and monitoring with an initial application to early pressure ulcer (bedsore) prevention.
Sanna Gaspard

SurgiVance Inc.
SurgiVance aims to provide instant bedside diagnosis of skin cancer indistinguishable from standard pathology.
Daniel Gareau

Seed stage, Deep Tech

Circle Optics
Hydra is setting a new standard for 360° content capture by making it as easy as a regular point and shoot camera.
Madilyn Beckman

Firefly Photonics LLC
Firefly Photonics’ mid-infrared LED microarrays are optimized for thermal scene generation supporting autonomous navigation testing and gas sensing.
Fatima Toor

Labby Inc.
Labby is a data company that is combining optical sensing with AI to help dairy farms become more profitable through real-time milk analysis.
Anshuman Das

Nicslab Pty Ltd
We create Xpow as a compact, scalable, and integrated photonic driver for faster internet.
Andri Mahendra

Optomel enables photonics innovators to grow new markets through our precise, roll-to-roll optical filter technology
Damian Gardiner

Owl Autonomous Imaging Inc.
Owl’s 3D thermal ranging camera operates day & night, in most weather, to classify pedestrians, animals and vehicles for safe autonomous operation.
Skip Cusack

Monolithic Short-Wave Infrared Focal Plane Array
Making short-wave infrared technologies affordable for commercial machine vision and imaging markets with low-cost imaging arrays.
Matthew Ackerman

High-speed laser transceiver based LiFi system enables 100,000x faster wireless data communication between underwater and underground devices.
Chao Shen

Senorics GmbH
Senorics builds low-cost, mobile and robust spectroscopic systems which bring spectroscopy to the B2C mass market - detect. know. decide.
Ronny Timmreck

SpectroClick Inc.
With an easy to use portable spectrometer, every person can test and obtain direct results for substances of concern in their home or the environment.
Alexander Scheeline

SurClean Inc.
Precise, Safe, Clean Surface Coating Removal and Preparation
Susan Sprentall

Touchless Automation GmbH
Levio is the first contactless die sorter. Contactless pick up, automatic inspection and sorting. Perfect for MEMS and photonics.
Maurizio Migliore

Labels: Photonics West 2020,startup challenge,business,entrepreneur

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