2014 Winners -

S3D Innovations

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - A group of Purdue University students who created a soy-based, renewable and recyclable filament for 3D printing won the top prize in the annual Student Soybean Product Innovation Contest.

The awards were announced at a reception Wednesday night (March 26) in Indianapolis. A record 15 teams completed projects in the competition, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary.

"For 20 years, Indiana soybean farmers have supported this competition in the College of Agriculture as a way to elevate our organization, Purdue and Indiana as the center of food and agriculture innovation," said Jane Ade Stevens, CEO of the Indiana Soybean Alliance, sponsor of the competition. "We are excited to see 15 student teams complete the competition this year and hope that their experience leads them to consider food and agricultural sciences as their future career."

The S3D Innovations team developed Filasoy, a next generation 3D printing material. Filasoy replaces harmful petroleum-based plastic with a low-energy, low-temperature, renewable and recyclable filament. It retains similar properties found in a bioplastic with an added "green" twist: It allows printing without waste.

The team will receive a $20,000 prize. Members are Carmen Valverde-Paniagua of Chihuahua, Mexico, a senior majoring in mechanical engineering; Nicole Raley Devlin of Rockville, Md., a doctoral student in chemical engineering; and Yanssen Tandy of Jakarta, Indonesia, a senior student in chemical engineering.

S3D Innovations - FilaSoy Video



The runner-up team, Soots, produced a 100 percent organic leather boot conditioner and polish by the same name. The product comes in two forms: One, made from soybean oil and beeswax, is a thick, more solid polish for genuine leather such as boots and reins and also serves as a waterproofing agent. The product is safe for the environment and not harmful to animals. The second product is a much lighter conditioner, in the form of a spray, that can be used on faux leather items. It is used more for cleaning and improving appearance than waterproofing.

The team will receive a $10,000 prize. Members are Sean Anderson of Churubusco, Ind., a junior in forestry; his brother, Evan, a sophomore in agricultural engineering; and Sara Richert of Oak Park, Ill., a sophomore in agricultural engineering.

Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, robins89@purdue.edu


2013 Winners -

Nature Loft (Soy) & Sky Maize (Corn)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Teams of Purdue University students who created fiber insulation from soybeans and a fireworks casing from corn won the top prizes in the annual Student Soybean and Corn Innovation Contests.

The awards were announced at a reception Wednesday night (March 20) in Indianapolis.

The competitions, sponsored by the Indiana Soybean Alliance and Indiana Corn Marketing Council, teach students how to be innovative entrepreneurs with soybeans and corn.

Both teams received a $20,000 prize for their work.

"The experience that students have working with corn and soybeans during this competition is really an introduction for many of them to these crops, especially when it comes to how corn and soybeans can be used as a main component in so many different products," said Jane Ade Stevens, chief executive of both organizations. "Encouraging students to think about corn and soybeans in creative, new ways benefits our corn and soybean farmers just as much as the variety of new products that the students generate."

The winning soybean team produced Nature Loft, a soy protein fiber insulation that can be used in bedding, including sleeping bags; apparel such as hats, gloves and footwear; and other products such as headphones.

Team members are Anshu Gupta of Chennai, India, a third-year doctoral student in chemical engineering, and John Grace of Hudson, Ohio, and Solwoo Kim of Seoul, South Korea, both seniors in management.

The winning corn team created Sky Maize, a biodegradable fireworks casing that is lighter and less expensive than what is now commercially available..

Team Members are Alexander Parobek of Munster, Ind., a junior majoring in chemistry; Jake Hoeing of Rushville, Ind., a junior in agriculture systems management; Polina Navotnaya of  Tashkent, Uzbekistan, a junior in chemistry and biochemistry; and Rachel Clayton of Greenwood, Ind., a junior in chemistry.

Second-place teams received a $10,000 prize

The second-place soybean team developed water-soluble Double Eyelid Glue. Members are Qiting Wu of  Guang, China, a senior in biology; Michelle Chan of Hong Hong, a senior in health and disease; and Yuqian Chen of Fuzhou, China, and Sook Yan Goh of Penang, Malaysia, both seniors in biochemistry.

The second-place corn team created Fog-Away, an anti-fog glass and mirror cleansing solution. Members are Anbo Wang of Jingdezhen, China, a junior in agricultural economics; Mitch French of Pittsboro, Ind., a sophomore in biological engineering; Hannah Doren of Northfield, Ill., a junior in food science; and Benjamin Lins of Racine, Wis., a sophomore in chemical engineering.

Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, robins89@purdue.edu

2012 Winners -

Soytronics (Soy) & Ceres Cosmetics (Corn)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Teams of Purdue University students who made cosmetics from corn and a biodegradable electronic substrate earned the top prizes in the annual Student Soybean and Corn Innovation Contests.

The awards were announced at a banquet Wednesday night (March 28) in Indianapolis.

The competitions, sponsored by the Indiana Soybean Alliance and the Indiana Corn Marketing Council, teach students how to be innovative entrepreneurs with corn and soybeans.

Both teams received a $20,000 prize for their work.

"Indiana soybean and corn farmers continue to fund these competitions at Purdue because they believe that encouraging students to think about corn and soybeans in new ways benefits our state's soybean and corn industries in a multitude of ways," said Jane Ade Stevens, executive director for both the corn and soybean checkoff organizations. "We are excited to see that interest in these competitions continues to be strong and that we continue to attract students from across the university who use their creativity and knowledge to bring us a high caliber of products."

The winning corn team produced Ceres Cosmetics, composed of 40 percent corn chaff, which is known for its ability to absorb oils and is hypoallergenic. The corn chaff powder replaces the talc normally found in cosmetics.

"Its environmental footprint is significantly smaller," the team said. "The target market for Ceres Cosmetics will be environmentally conscious women who care deeply about what they put on their bodies."

Ceres Cosmetics team members are Jessica Brazelton, a graduate biology student of Monongahela, Pa.; Michaelann Kresel, a senior agro-business student of Westville, Ind.; Soo Yee Kuah, a junior biochemistry student from Ipoh, Malaysia; and Shengjie Xu, a junior biology student of Shanghai.

The winning soybean team created Soytronics, a flexible, lightweight and low-cost substrate on which an electronic circuit is printed. The team said the key advancement is in replacing petroleum-derived, epoxy-based substrates currently used for making printed circuit boards. 

"As the major component of our substrate is a soy derivative, our substrates are biodegradable, eco-friendly and reusable," the team said.

Soytronics team members are Carmen Valverde-Paniagua, a junior mechanical engineering student of Chihuahua, Mexico, and chemical engineering graduate students Aniruddha Kelkar of Mumbai, India; and Anand Venkatesan of Chennai, India.

Second-place teams received a $10,000 prize.

The second-place corn team developed helmet padding made from corn starch. The padding can be used in helmets that would need to absorb dangerous blows, such as in football. Team Kaizen members are Alice Bao, a junior management student from Beijing; Jin Sun, an agronomy graduate student from Lanzhou, Gansu Province, China; Peren Xiao, a junior economics  student from Austin, Texas; and Xiangye Xiao, a graduate student in agronomy from Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, China.

There were two second-place teams in the soybean contest. One team developed SoyBright, a nanomolecular soy-based polish aimed primarily at the automotive market. Team members are Milad Alucozai, a sophomore psychology student from West Lafayette, Ind., and Edward Van Bogaert, a senior history student from Rochester, Ill. The other team created Soytures, bio-absorbable sutures. Those team members, all students in the agricultural and biological engineering program, are Yeshaben Shah of India; Allison Ustynoski of Shavertown, Pa.; Kaitlyn Wolak of Indianapolis; and Megan Morrison of Carmel, Ind.
Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, robins89@purdue.edu

2011 Winners -

Dentural (Soy) & Natural Renewal Liquid Bandage (Corn)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Teams of Purdue University students who developed a soy-based denture adhesive and a liquid bandage out of corn have won the top prizes  in the annual Student Soybean and Corn Innovation Contests.

The awards were announced at a banquet Wednesday night (March 23) at the Indiana Roof Ballroom in Indianapolis.

The competition, sponsored by the Indiana Soybean Alliance and the Indiana Corn Marketing Council, teaches students how to be innovative entrepreneurs with corn and soybeans.

"The versatility of corn and soybeans is limitless, and these competitions serve as a showcase not only for the potential new uses of crops grown here in Indiana but also for the students who put their time, effort and talent into their projects," said Jane Ade Stevens, executive director for both the corn and soybean checkoff organizations.

Some products that students have created in previous contest years have led to commercial development and further research. Soy crayons, for example, are available in stores under the Prang brand, and a soy pharmaceutical excipient is undergoing full-scale university research.

"Indiana corn and soybean farmers are committed to working with Purdue to continue to build excitement around the new uses competitions, which ultimately helps build demand for corn and soybeans," Stevens said.

Team members who developed Dentural, the first-place entry in the soybean contest this year, presented an all-natural adhesive for full dentures. The product is in the form of a paste consisting of soy products that form a vacuum to keep dentures in place. It is an alternative to synthetic chemicals used in other products.

Team leader Alvin Ang of Malaysia said the group chose to develop Dentural after learning that other denture creams contain zinc, leading to health concerns.

"So we decided to come up with a safer and better way," said Ang, a senior chemical engineering student.  He said one dentist already is interested in the product. 

The team will share a cash award of $20,000. Other members are Manaz Taleyarkhan of Lafayette; David Barron of Saline, Mich; and Ankit Gupta of Carmel.

Students who created the Natural Renewal Liquid Bandage out of corn used the ethanol production waste product zein as the main component. Zein is a transparent, edible, water insoluble and biodegradable polymer that acts as a physical defense for wounds and binds to the skin's surface. Students used ethyl alcohol made from corn that would act as an antiseptic until the solvent evaporates. They believe that the product also will act as a skin scaffold that will reduce scarring in minor wounds.""
“This is such an untapped idea,” said team leader Robert Agee, a junior biological engineering and pharmacy major from Rushville. “And it is 100 percent safe.

Other team members who produced that winning entry, also a $20,000 prize, are Andrew Furrow of Greenwood, Ann Alvar of Zionsville and Yang Zhou of West Lafayette.

Other winners in the contest:

* Soybean, second place, $10,000: Food additive FIBits, which provide fiber and protein to children while enhancing flavor. It can be added to baked goods such as muffins, pancakes and cupcakes as well as to dry foods such as cereal and oatmeal, and desserts such as cheesecake or ice cream. Team members are Danielle Dawson of Chagrin Falls, Ohio; Jeff Lai of Taipei, Taiwan; Chandana Namburi of Terre Haute; and Kat Gilbert of Indianapolis.

* Soybean, third place, $5,000: Antimicrobial surface protector. The sprayable coat works to protect countertop surfaces from stains and scratches while providing protection against micro-organisms that could be harmful to humans. Team members are Cameron Brown and Vinchessica Gray, both of Gary; Jordan Blackwell of Wausau, Wis.; and Tochykwu Chimezie of Baton Rouge, La.

 Corn, second place, $10,000: Drop ceiling tiles made from corn stover. The tiles are more environmentally friendly compared with regular tiles made from such materials as wood, plastic and fiberglass and other materials. The tiles not only lessen the amounts of trees or fossil fuels needed to make ceiling tiles, but they also can provide corn producers with another source of revenue. Team members are Jonathon Welte of Elberfeld, Audrey Wessel of St. Anthony and Spencer Dieg of Evansville.

* Corn, third place, $5,000:  PLAdhesive, hot glue stick. The team developed a group of products based on polylactic acid, with emphasis on hot melt adhesive technology. Because PLA-based resins offer tremendous tensile strength, the team contends they will be an improvement over traditional hot melt adhesives. Team members are Tom and Grimes of Fort Wayne, Neal Kostry of Mishawaka and Kevin Fischer of Roselle, Ill. 
Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, robins89@purdue.edu