UC Ventures

By University of California | The University of California is an economic powerhouse that produces five new inventions every day. Read about our latest discoveries, innovations and startups.

Animations that are true to life

<b>Imagine going to see the latest Pixar movie. You’re sitting in the theater enjoying the film, when you begin to notice the astounding level of detail in the animation. On screen, water is rippling and leaves are flittering with an almost uncanny realism. It’s art imitating life with incredible</b> …

UC Berkeley

Revolution Foods and Back to the Roots are remaking kids school meals.

When the Today Show aired a back-to-school segment on how school food is being disrupted by healthier options, producers turned to two companies …

Why ‘Dreamers’ at UC should feel very lucky

When María Blanco took a new job at the end of 2014, no one knew that a billionaire reality TV star would launch a long-shot presidential bid by …

Squid ink may replace dental poking and prodding

You know when you go to the dentist, and they shove that little measuring-stick-like tool up between each of your teeth and the overlapping gum …

Health

Above Devastated Houston, Armies of Drones Prove Their Worth

Less than a week after the last drops of Hurricane Harvey fell, Houston is just beginning to assess the damage. At least 46 people have died. More …

Drones

Cyborg bacteria turn into tiny, zero-waste solar panels

<b>To help humans capture more of the sun’s energy than natural photosynthesis can, UC Berkeley scientists have taught bacteria to cover themselves in tiny, highly efficient solar panels to produce useful chemical compounds.</b><p>Chemistry professor Peidong Yang and Kelsey Sakimoto, a former graduate …

Fighting memory loss with virtual reality

<b>We’re all familiar with the image of someone donning virtual reality goggles to enter a new environment while seated at their computer.</b><p>At UCLA, Nanthia Suthana is one of the first neuroscientists in the world to harness the power of VR to unravel how someone’s brain encodes and retrieves memories …

UCLA study helps Californians save electricity — and money — this summer

<b>Electricity demand fluctuates each day, and consumers who want to unplug during peak times to save money and help the environment now have a new tool at their disposal. Chai Energy, a partner of the UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation, is making real-time energy information a reality for electricity</b> …

Startup@BerkeleyLaw Expands Outreach to Underrepresented Entrepreneurs | Berkeley Law

Startup@BerkeleyLaw, a fast-growing initiative at Berkeley Law that helps new ventures take flight, has launched a program to help underrepresented …

Berkeley’s Sugarlogix is engineering a sugar that’s good for you

Currently on hot desk at UC Berkeley accelerator SkyDeck, this startup is making prebiotic sugars, ones that promote good gut health.The post …

Microbiome

Low-cost smart glove translates American Sign Language alphabet

<b>Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a smart glove that wirelessly translates the American Sign Language alphabet into text and controls a virtual hand to mimic sign language gestures. The device, which engineers call “The Language of Glove,” was built for less than</b> …

The Innovator Gap - MIT Technology Review

An innovator I know—let’s call him Tom—had trained for a decade at some of the world’s top research institutions to become an expert in materials …

Innovation

Providing clean water for a growing population

<b>Engineers at the University of California, Riverside have developed a new way to recover almost 100 percent of the water from highly concentrated salt solutions. The system will alleviate water shortages in arid regions and reduce concerns surrounding high salinity brine disposal, such as hydraulic</b> …

Pioneering a new dimension in virtual reality: The nanoscale

<b>Like many other tech entrepreneurs, UC San Diego Class of 2017 engineering grad Dennis Chiang got his start in a basement. But he and fellow classmates behind the UC San Diego startup Nanome haven’t exactly been working amid dusty garden tools and old sports equipment as they seek to establish</b> …

Why yes, those are robot delivery minions at UC Berkeley

Kiwi, a new on-demand delivery service using a fleet of robots, emerged from UC Berkeley’s LAUNCH program for startups.The post Why yes, those are …

Robots

Scientists kill invasive ants with seaweed

Scientists in California have developed an eco-friendly way to battle invasive ants. The new ant bait is made from a seaweed-based hydrogel.

Seaweed

University researchers key ‘in 40% of top inventions since 1950s’

University researchers were leading actors in 40 per cent of the top inventions since the 1950s, despite receiving relatively low amounts of research …

Students’ Engineering Chops to be Showcased at ‘Innovate to Grow’

Is it still possible to build a better mouse trap? Engineering students at UC Merced think so.<p>“Eraticate” — a fitting name for a group focused on …

Triton Entrepreneur Night: Pitch Perfect

Sensors that tell you if Chinese food from last weekend is still safe to eat. An app to let your professor know you have no idea what he’s talking …

Entrepreneurship

New battery-free implant is powered by your body

<b>Researchers from UCLA and the University of Connecticut have designed a new biofriendly energy storage system called a biological supercapacitor, which operates using charged particles, or ions, from fluids in the human body. The device is harmless to the body’s biological systems, and it could</b> …

Congratulations to our UC Entrepreneur luncheon winners!

<b>Nineteen UC entrepreneurs will get a chance to meet and pitch some of Silicon Valley’s leading venture capitalists next month at a special lunch hosted by UC President Janet Napolitano and Christine Gulbranson, UC’s senior vice president of innovation and entrepreneurship.</b><p>The winners were chosen …

Big Ideas pitch day: seeding the future

<b>In 2015, pneumonia was the leading cause of death in patients under the age of 5, claiming the lives of nearly a million children worldwide, half of whom lived in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa with limited medical resources.</b><p>Adam Rao, a bioengineering Ph.D. student at UC Berkeley and medical …

When the Dalai Lama asks you to make an app...

<b>In her house on a hill in San Francisco with sweeping views of the city, Eve Ekman has a meditation altar, which highlights her spiritual interests.</b><p>In a nearby room, Ekman has the lamp by which her father, Paul Ekman, UC San Francisco professor emeritus in psychology, studied facial expressions — …

<b>Imagine a future in which every home has an appliance that pulls all the water the household needs out of the air, even in dry or desert climates, using only the power of the sun.</b><p>That future may be around the corner, with the demonstration this week of a water harvester that uses only ambient …

Turning ideas into enterprise

<b>Grape growers lose an estimated $1.5 billion each year to fungal infections that damage vines after necessary pruning. Philippe Rolshausen, a researcher at the University of California, Riverside, is helping them fight back. He first developed an organic, beeswax-based sealant that growers can</b> …

Driving apps like Waze are creating new traffic problems

After a long day teaching at Ohlone College in Fremont, Rose-Margaret Itua often spends 40 minutes just waiting to get on the highway. It’s only a …

Space start-ups get their 'Shark Tank' moment

After the success of nimble companies such as rocket and capsule maker SpaceX and Earth-imaging firm Planet, investors are starting to see aerospace start-ups as viable ventures. But it’s still unclear whether these young firms can work with big, established players such as Boeing Co. and Lockheed …

Startups

Student entrepreneur brings light to South African school children

UCLA sophomore Luke Mostert is a partner in a business that donates lanterns to children who live in shacks in electricity-deprived sections of his …

South Africa

Grown in California

Other notable winners and finalists in the New Venture Competition• Inogen (2001), a now public company that produces a portable oxygen concentrator to improve user mobility<br>• TrackR (2009), a Bluetooth-enabled tracking device that links to a phone app<br>• Milo Sensors (2015), developer of a wearable alcohol …