Meet 20 new startups speeding toward $10K

Health care, and helping hands for those with limited resources.

January 22, 2018


Clockwise from top left: Products from Animo, Okoa, D3 Diagnostics, Loop, and Atolla Skin Lab

Why It Matters

The Accelerate semifinalists represent 20 new ideas aimed at improving human wellness, protecting the environment, and more.

Medical devices to reduce Parkinson’s tremors, sustainable farming practices, and rural banking are just a few of the ideas from the 20 teams vying for top prize in MIT’s $100K Entrepreneurship Competition Accelerate contest. Accelerate is the second of three contests hosted by MIT’s $100K, and this year’s cohort reflects a focus on improving health care and bringing opportunity to developing areas.

The overarching $100K competition is divided into Pitch, Accelerate, and Launch contests. The Accelerate contest narrows down the semifinalists over the next month through mentoring and workshops. The contest closes with a finale on Feb. 20, where the eight remaining teams take the stage to vie for the $10,000 grand prize. All of the teams have at least one MIT student member.

Meet the Accelerate cohort:

AllPower harvests ambient radiofrequency energy to create battery-less “internet of things” devices.

Animo [PDF] reduces tremors in Parkinson’s patients using vibration therapy in a wearable device.

animo-4A Parkinson’s patient drew two spirals. The right one was done wearing the Animo wearable.

Arable helps farmers optimize tilling practices, leading to more efficient and sustainable farming techniques. 

Atolla Skin Lab
Atolla Skin Lab creates individual skincare formulas based on a person’s unique skin data.

Centaur Diagnostics
Centaur Diagnostics connects artificial intelligence image analysis providers to medical students, residents, and professionals. 

D3 Diagnostics
D3 Diagnostics provides holographic imaging technology in resource-limited settings.

Divaqua Technologies
Divaqua Technologies hopes to reduce the amount of hazardous chemicals polluting water systems, using next-generation water treatment technology.

Gen Cores
Gen Cores is developing multi-dense foam structures to build safer helmets and boost airplane fuel efficiency. 

Iterative Scopes
Iterative Scopes uses data analytics and advanced computing techniques to narrow health care disparities.

Loop offers low-cost wheelchair seat cushions (made from bike inner tubes) to prevent pressure sores.

loop-100k Sarah Tress, SB '19 (right), conducts market research about Loop's wheelchair cushion in Bali.

Okoa uses an attachment that can turn any motorcycle into an ambulance, helping to close the gap in medical emergency transportation in developing countries.

OZÉ is a mobile app that aggregates and analyzes transaction data to push context-specific recommendations to business owners.

Soil Sense
Soil Sense delivers affordable soil sensor systems to farmers in developing countries.

Sonic Vision
Sonic Vision facilitates safer, more cost-effective invasive epidurals. 

StartHub Africa
StartHub Africa teaches African students entrepreneurial skills, and helps universities and professors build a support structure for students’ business ventures. 

TracFlo is an online platform providing a central location to input, track, and approve changes to project scope and cost caused by unforeseen events on a construction site.

Umbulizer provides a low-cost portable device that provides continuous ventilation to patients in resource-limited health care settings.

UniCoin aims to reduce student loan interest rates.

Zilper Trenchless
Zilper Trenchless is redesigning trenchless pipe installations which cut back on time, costs, and environmental impact.

zilper-trrenchlessZilper Trenchless co-founder Roberto Zillante, brother of co-founder Daniel Zillante, MBA '19  

Zippi brings financial services to more than 100 million Brazilians living outside of the banking system.