UNT Innovator Awards given to professor, students who find creative solutions

From left to right, Narendra Dahotre, Roberto Aguilar and Ryan Girardot (Photo by Gary Payne)The Office of Research and Innovation has recognized a faculty member, a graduate student and an undergraduate student with UNT's 2017 Innovator Awards for their work in finding creative solutions to today's most pressing issues.

Narendra Dahotre, interim associate vice president for research and innovation and a University Distinguished Research Professor in engineering, has spent his career using high-powered lasers to process and manufacture advanced and new materials. Dahotre, demonstrated his leadership in innovation with his technology "Laser-Assisted Machining of Hard Tissues and Bone," which will enable surgeons to use a laser to abate bones and tissues during joint (such as hip or knee) and other bone replacements and limb salvation surgeries. The use of a laser instead of conventional surgery tools like hammers and chisels offers a drastic reduction in trauma to the patient. It allows for fewer complications, less pain, faster healing times, higher accuracies and a reduced need for additional surgeries or post-operative interventions. The technology is currently licensed to an Australian start-up company, and Dahotre spent his sabbatical working with the licensee to help accelerate the development of the core technology into a viable medical technology.

His research has generated funding support in excess of $7.5 million from government and industrial organizations. He is the author of four books, has been issued 16 U.S. patents, has published nearly 300 articles in professional journals and is a member of the National Academy of Inventors.

Roberto Aguilar, Ph.D. candidate in chemistry and biochemistry, is taking a creative approach to his work on nanoparticle deposition technologies. He works in the lab of Guido Verbeck, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry and a member of UNT's BioDiscovery Institute.

Ryan Girardot, a senior marketing major, developed an EPLAY Basketball app through Player's Revolution Sports, a company he co-founded and serves as CEO. The app uses a skill-assessing algorithm, called E-Score, to provide a quantified skill value to players.

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