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IU Graduate Wins $100K to Improve Prostheses, Hearing Aids

An Indiana University (IU) Kelley School of Business, Bloomington, master’s of business administration (MBA) graduate has been named the winner of IU Bloomington’s third annual Building Entrepreneurs in Software and Technology (BEST) competition. He will receive $100,000 in start-up funding for his new company, Analog Computing Solutions, which will focus on technological improvements for prosthetic devices and hearing aids.

Gregory Mattes, a 2014 graduate of the Kelley MBA program, used technologies licensed by IU’s Research and Technology Corp. and originally developed by faculty members at both IU Bloomington and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) to create a business plan to improve the quality, speed, and longevity of hearing aids and myoelectric prostheses. Using extended analog computer technology developed by IUPUI assistant professor of biomedical engineering Ken Yoshida, PhD, and based on an invention by IU Bloomington School of Informatics and Computing associate professor Jonathan Mills, Mattes’ company will seek to improve the computing capabilities for the advanced sound-filtering algorithms being used in hearing aid research. The low-power, high-speed architecture of extended analog computers can also be used to improve the signal processing functionality of the latest myoelectric prostheses, Mattes said. Specifically, in work funded by the National Science Foundation, Analog Computing Solutions is addressing the computing challenge presented by targeted muscle reinnervation.

“The dramatic increase in the number and density of electrode sites, and need to implant multi-electrode structures into targeted muscles, will increase the signal processing requirements beyond the power and speed capabilities of the traditional mobile digital signal processing used in these devices,” Mattes said.

The BEST fund was created in 2011 with $1.2 million from ten individual investors and IU’s Research and Technology Corp. The fund supports an outlay of up to $250,000 in annual prize money, with the first-place winner guaranteed $100,000.