Inspire Engineering Students to New Ventures
Give to the Capstone Fund
Carbon fiber is an emerging technology with the potential to have a big environmental impact. Lighter than metal, carbon fiber vehicles are more fuel efficient, but the material’s nonconductive properties can cause problems with sensor electronics and communications devices. A group of enterprising engineering students have developed and marketed a conductive paint additive that may make it easier and cheaper to adopt carbon fiber in planes and cars.
The students who developed the product, called PolyDrop, participated in a new capstone design course in chemical engineering. They took an early stage lab technology, refined the research and wrote a business plan. With support from the Capstone Fund, team PolyDrop was able to rigorously test their product and create a working prototype. They entered their project in the Environmental Innovation Challenge, a UW science and business fair, and won the $10,000 grand prize to pursue commercialization for the technology.
Your gift to the Capstone Fund will allow engineering students to pursue their professional interests and tackle complex, full-cycle design. Students gain teamwork, communication and open-ended thinking skills as they apply their engineering education to a real-world problem. Your gift may even spark a new venture while providing students with the tools to succeed.
PolyDrop was the grand prize winner of the 2013 Environmental Innovation Challenge.