NC State professor on MIT list of promising innovators under 35

Buckley Report

RALEIGH, N.C. (WGHP) — Growing up in India, Amay Bancodkar had a role model.

“I always considered my dad as a role model and he’s an engineer,” Bancodkar said, when asked about why he went into engineering. “The kind of respect that he had in my family, that kind of was one of the reasons why, ‘Hey, you know what? I also want to be an engineer.’”

It may seem counterintuitive since we often think of engineers as the math and physics types but to be an innovative engineer takes a lot of imagination.

“Great ideas that, at least, like we think of as engineers are inspired by movies and novels where people really push their imagination and we, as engineers, try to see how can we make that as a reality? Of course, it’s not always possible,” Bancodkar said.

But history is littered with examples of where what seemed impossible to many was turned into reality by creative engineers – holograms, defibrillators and atomic energy, just to name a few.

Bancodkar is a professor and researcher at NC State University who is developing biomedical devices that can make our lives better. His device can be worn almost anywhere and the key to ones that may be adopted into wide use is making them user-friendly.

“You could put like a big system on your arm and say, ‘Hey, you know what, it works,’ but that’s not really practical,” Bancodkar said. “There are only a narrow range of sensors that can be made in a completely battery-free fashion, like this.”

His wearable operates off a battery-powered by … your sweat. Not kidding, and just a droplet of it.

See what other great inventions were inspired by novels and movies as well as the big award Bancodkar got for his work in this edition of the Buckley Report.

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