Twelve new projects joining Tata Center in 2016-17

MIT PIs to receive funding and holistic support for projects seeking impact in the developing world.

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The MIT Tata Center for Technology and Design today announced the projects to be supported through its annual seed fund. The 12 projects were selected from a highly competitive field of proposals on the basis of their potential to make a significant impact in the developing world.

With this latest round, the Tata Center has now supported more than 100 projects since its inception in 2012. This year’s portfolio includes innovations to make health services more accessible; tools facilitating disaster preparedness, water management, and a low-carbon future; recycling and reuse technologies, and more.

“The Tata Center provides researchers not just with funding, but with mentorship, educational support, and connections to emerging communities,” said Tata Center director Robert Stoner. “The projects we’ve chosen this year represent opportunities to apply MIT’s world-class research in real-world scenarios where there is a pressing need.”

The newly-funded projects will join roughly 30 continuing projects across six domains: agriculture, energy, environment, health, housing, and water. Tata Center researchers spend extended time in the field, primarily in India, working with local collaborators, gathering data, and testing their solutions.

The new Tata Center projects for 2016-2017 are:

Modeling Low-Carbon Development Pathways for India
Valerie Karplus, Sloan School of Management
Niven Winchester, MIT Energy Initiative

Rapid Diagnostic Tests for Zika, Dengue, and Chikungunya Viruses in India
Lee Gehrke, Institute for Medical Engineering

Gastrointestinal Drug Delivery Device for Tuberculosis Treatment
Robert Langer, Institute Professor of Chemical Engineering
Giovanni Traverso, Harvard Medical School

Advanced Motors for Appliances
James Kirtley, Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science

Continuously Learning Geospatial Services for Community Health Workers
Deb Roy, Media Lab
Prabhjot Singh, Arnhold Institute for Global Health

Scale-up and Implementation of Shock Electrodialysis for Water Purification
Martin Bazant, Department of Chemical Engineering

Implants for Cost-Effective and Accessible Intraperitoneal Delivery of Chemotherapy
Michael Cima, Lemelson-MIT Program

Scale-up and Deployment of Pulmonary Disease Diagnostic Tools
Richard Fletcher, D-Lab

Devulcanization of Waste Rubber for Reuse in New Tires
Bradley Olsen, Department of Chemical Engineering
Greg Stephanopolous, Department of Chemical Engineering

Asha and Anganwadi Kit for Public Health Screening and Surveillance
Richard Fletcher, D-Lab

Real-time Flood Mapping for Disaster Management Decision Support in Chennai
Miho Mazereeuw, Department of Architecture

Evaluating Off-Grid Hydro Energy Systems in Irregular Channel Flow for Intensive Agriculture in Developing Countries
James Wescoat, Department of Architecture
Afreen Siddiqi, Institute for Data, Systems, and Society

Low-Cost Oral Cancer Screening Device
Ramesh Raskar, Media Lab

Founded at MIT in 2012 with support from the Tata Trusts, one of India’s oldest philanthropic organizations, the Tata Center gives holistic support to MIT faculty and graduate student researchers working on projects aimed at improving quality of life in the developing world. A part of the MIT Energy Initiative, the Tata Center is on the web at tatacenter.mit.edu.