Indian American technologists named to MIT Technology Review’s ‘Innovators Under 35’ List

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Eight Indian Americans were among 35 to be featured on MIT Technology Review’s 18th annual list of “Innovators Under 35.”

Recognized for innovative technologies and split into five categories, these are inventors Shreya Dave, Shinjini Kundu and Manan Suri; entrepreneur Ashutosh Saxena; visionaries Archana Kamal, Shehar Bano and Prineha Narang; and pioneer Humsa Venkatesh.

There were no Indian Americans in the humanitarian category.

Dave’s doctorate research involved molecular filtration membranes made of graphene oxide, but even though it is cheaper and less prone to degrading than the polymers and ceramics used today, the method was too expensive for the water industry and instead ended up saving energy in the industrial processes used to separate chemicals for food, beverages, drugs, and fuel.

Dave is now the CEO of Via Separations and her technology is designed to replace the current system for separating chemical compounds, which basically amounts to boiling.

Kundu has created an artificial intelligence system that can analyze and find patterns undetectable to the naked eye, which can make the detection and treatment of diseases easier.

Suri has built key elements of computer chips that mimic the learning ability and energy efficiency of the brain.

This is known as emerging non-volatile memory because of peculiarities in their nanoscale physics, eNVM devices often behave in random ways, which in computers is usually a flaw.

Saxena is the CEO and cofounder of Brain of Things, which developed an AI system called Caspar that turns a home into a sort of robot that we can talk to and interact with.

Bano, a Pakistani American, has made it possible to fight state censorship of the internet since Pakistan blocked YouTube in 2012.

Kamal, an assistant professor at UMass Lowell, has demonstrated that quantum information could be steered and amplified for transmission before leaving the device where it was processed.

Narang, an assistant professor of computational materials science at Harvard, seeks to build technologies by starting small: with the atom.

Venkatesh’s research, at Stanford University, revealed how cancers hijack the activity of neural networks to fuel their own growth and how targeting a type of activity seen in many different types of cancer could lead to therapies that work against tumor cells in all their diversity.

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