Company co-founded by Professor Babak Ziaie awarded Phase I Grant from National Science Foundation
SmartGait, a company co-founded by ECE Professor Babak Ziaie and Professor Shirley Rietdyk of the Department of Health and Kinesiology, has been awarded a Phase I Grant from the National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer Program. The program seeks to transform scientific discovery into societal and economic benefit by catalyzing private sector commercialization of technological innovations. The program increases the incentive and opportunity for startups and small businesses to undertake cutting-edge, high-quality scientific research and development. The NSF SBIR/STTR program seeks to assist early-stage companies with innovative technologies that require additional research and development in order to advance commercialization. The grant consists of $225,000 along with entrepreneurial guidance and training.
Falls in older adults are a major cause of morbidity and mortality, and result in a substantial burden on health care services. This grant focuses on the commercial development of a device, SmartGait, that will provide an easy and inexpensive assessment of fall-risk in large cohorts. Identifying fall-risk before a fall occurs is critical for timely deployment of preventive measures, but also so that limited resources can be allocated to those who are most likely to experience a fall.