The InVenture Prize is one of Georgia Tech’s most successful programs for fostering innovation and entrepreneurship among undergraduates. The annual contest rewards students with cash prizes for inventions that aim to solve society’s biggest problems. This year’s three winning teams created devices that have the potential to protect firefighters, keep athletes safe, and improve water quality.
TRUEPANI developed a water disinfection system for Indian households that won the contest’s $5,000 People’s Choice Award. The system includes a cup with a thin antimicrobial coating that disinfects water by releasing copper ions. The ions disrupt the microbes’ cellular functions and kill them. The cup’s design mimics a shape typically found in rural Indian households. Each cup comes with a similarly coated metal lotus flower, which symbolizes purity. This lotus flower is attached to a chain so it can be placed in the water storage containers popular in homes across India. The main inventors are recent graduates — Samantha Becker, civil engineering, and Shannon Evanchec, environmental engineering — who are participating in Georgia Tech’s Startup Summer program for young entrepreneurs. Photo by Rob Felt