Two Cambridge companies are set to take their big ideas beyond the stratosphere after winning a $500,000 "Galactic Grant" for research in space.
The companies, Nanobiosym and Zaiput Flow Technologies, were selected out of a group of Massachusetts thinkers who entered the contest. They will share the prize.
When their projects are ready, they will be sent to the International Space Station’s U.S. National Laboratory, which orbits around the planet and is the only place in the galaxy researchers can currently run experiments in zero gravity.
“Congratulations to the winners of this competition, and I look forward to seeing the results of this important research,” Gov. Charlie Baker said in a statement.
Baker made the announcement Tuesday at the ISS conference happening in Boston this week. The prize is a collaborative effort of the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space and the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center.
Ideas to take flight:
Nanobiosym will study bacteria growth in zero gravity, and use that research to give antibiotic development a boost. The results of that work could benefit all of mankind, said Chairman and CEO Dr. Anita Goel. “We will leverage the microgravity environment on the ISS to accelerate the Precision Medicine revolution here on Earth,” Goel said.
Zaiput Flow Technologies, a start-up, will run tests of a device they use to make chemicals. It’s called a “microfluidic liquid-liquid separator” and studying its use in zero-G could make it more efficient, and could revolutionize chemistry. “This opportunity will allow us to bring our cutting edge liquid-liquid separation technology a step further while advancing flow chemistry and the environmental, drug development and manufacturing benefits associated with it,” said CEO Dr. Andrea Adamo.