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Fifth Missouri Tech Expo gives ideas a space to shine

Expo

The Tech Expo served as a forum allowing researchers and MU startups to pitch technologies and business plans to an audience of entrepreneurs, investors and technology companies.

The University of Missouri hosted the Fifth Annual Missouri Technology Expo on October 16. The Tech Expo served as a forum allowing researchers and MU startups to pitch technologies and business plans to an audience of entrepreneurs, investors and technology companies.

Nearly 200 guests registered for the event this year, and College of Engineering faculty and graduate students showcased their inventions and businesses. John Gahl, C.W. LaPierre Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Nuclear Program director, started off the event explaining how the reaction-inducing activity of a palladium catalyst could be produced, then used to make a more effective catalytic converter, for example. Chemistry Professor Dave Robertson pitched a novel and promising radiopharmaceutical that can deliver lethal doses of radiation to tumors. Benjamin Barnhart showed how clothing could be made to harness energy with a technology developed in Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor Jae Kwon’s lab. Additionally, a number of companies attempting to commercialize the results of university research had a chance to pitch their business plans, including Shawn Xu, associate research professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, for his startup, Energy Americas, and Andrew Rits for Nanova.

A new feature of this years’ expo was a demonstration room, where audience members had the opportunity to try out the startups’ innovative products. Several of these companies had ties to the College of Engineering: Energy Americas (Xu), CryoCrate (Assistant Research Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Xu Han), ThermAvant (C.W. LaPierre Professor Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Bill Ma), and Health Indicator (Computer Science Department Chair Dong Xu and Computer Science Associate Professor Ye Duan).