Explore WARF Inventions and Patents

WARF Technologies

WARF’s portfolio of more than 1,900 technologies covers a wide range of categories, including analytical instrumentation, pharmaceuticals, food products, agriculture, research tools, medical devices, pluripotent stem cells, clean technology, information technology and semiconductors.

Information summaries, which describe each technology and its applications, benefits, inventors and patent status, can be downloaded, printed and shared by clicking on the technology category links to the left on this page.

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New Inventions

Platform for High-Throughput Analysis of Microbial Interactions

UW–Madison researchers have developed a research tool for large-scale mapping of interactions in microbiomes. Their method employs gene sequencing in a microfluidic system to increase throughput by several orders of magnitude (1,000-10,000 times).

Specifically, the researchers mixed groups of several species of bacteria in culture. They encapsulated cells into millions of picoliter droplets dispersed in an oil phase. The droplets were incubated to allow the microbes to interact, assemble into a community and perform functional activities. After incubation, the composition of the community within the droplet was analyzed using fluorescence microscopy or next-generation DNA sequencing.

The presence or absence of microbes in a drop can be indicative of different species preferentially interacting with other species in the bulk culture or droplet, and can be used to reconstruct the microbiome’s ecological network.

Semiconductor Quantum Dot Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE) Simulation Tool

A Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin – Platteville has developed a software simulation tool for the computer aided engineering (CAE) of Quantum Dots. The CAE simulation tool accepts input of the QD parameters and then computes and returns the resulting optical and electronic properties. This includes QD structures with an InAs core and a GaAs matrix, and can be extended to any III-IV materials. The CAE tool simulates the most popular pyramidal and half-ellipsoidal QD shapes and can be extended to any arbitrary geometric shape. Compared with the often-incomplete results reported in the literature, this CAE simulation tool returns all possible electronic states within the QD. The CAE simulation results also supported the experimental data for the corresponding QD. The simulation tool currently runs as an application in the COMSOL platform and does not require a supercomputer for calculations and processing.

Novel Catalysts for Improved Remediation of Sulfur-Containing Pollutants

A professor of chemistry at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse has developed a versatile suite of iron-based catalysts with the potential to promote rapid, efficient oxidation of deleterious sulfur-containing compounds present in crude oil, natural gas, and/or aqueous waste streams. With these novel catalysts, there is no need for corrosive base, elevated temperatures, expensive or dangerous oxidants, or high pressures.

App for Stratifying Autism Spectrum Disorders

UW–Madison researchers have developed a software test to differentiate ASD participants into two distinct types of contextual learners. The first group resembles a “Typically Developing” (TD) learning profile, and the second group does not modulate with context, indicating that they are not able to learn the embedded context.

Participants viewed a monitor divided into four quadrants and were asked to search for a visual target, then indicate the quadrant in which the target was located. Unbeknownst to the participants, contextual information about the target location was manipulated across sessions by varying the number of off-targets and the probability of the target being present in that quadrant. Search time as a function of the proportion of informative cues in the target quadrant was used as a measure of contextual learning.

Health Monitoring and Imaging System for Concrete Structures

An assistant professor in civil engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville in partnership with an electrical engineer from New Mexico State University, has developed a comprehensive monitoring system capable of identifying interior defects and stress in concrete structures such as bridges. By combining sensor technology with an ultrasound signal generator, multi-channel data acquisition and proprietary data processing algorithms, the interior conditions in any cross section of a bridge can be visualized in 3D. With this technology, small stress changes in the order of 0.1Mpa and cracks as thin as a human hair are detected. Such a combined system provides competitive advantage over existing methods that solely measure stress changes and rely on installation of strain gauges on the surface or inside concrete structures. These methods only provide for measurement of stress changes at the locations where sensors are placed, creating gaps in the evaluation of stress change. In addition, with current technology, holes must be drilled and patched for sensor placement and bridges must be taken out of service during testing. The proposed technology provides for a more absolute evaluation of not only changes in stress but also identification of cracks, does not require drilling of holes and can be used on in-service bridges, saving time, money and providing a more comprehensive assessment of bridge health.
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New Patents

A Low-Cost, Dosimeter Accessory Kit Enabling the Collection of Accurate Sound Level Measurements from within the Ear Canal

Researchers from the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater in partnership with the Center for Device Design and Development at UW-Fox Valley, have developed a set of low-cost, dosimeter attachments that allow for sound levels to be measured in the ear canal. By combining these novel attachments with commercially available dosimeters, a more accurate reading can be obtained that reflects the true exposure level of potentially harmful noise to the individual. With the current accessory kit, one of three attachments comfortably fits in the user’s ear and connects to a standard dosimeter. Field tests have demonstrated that higher sound levels were recorded at the level of the ear canal using these attachments compared with the traditional method using a shoulder mounted dosimeter.

Sharpening Filter for Orthovoltage Radiation

UW–Madison researchers have developed a compact filter that increases the sharpness of orthovoltage pencil beams and may be tailored to different beam sizes and focus depths.

The technology features a specially designed collimator and filter disk having concentric circular attenuation regions to produce the necessary sharpening effect. The flat design of the filter disk supports easy installation and replacement, and the concentric circular attenuation regions are amenable to computerized optimization of the region sizes and spacing.

Medical Imaging with Better Temporal Fidelity Can Streamline Stroke Care

UW–Madison researchers have developed a method that increases temporal fidelity, sampling density and/or reduces noise of image frames obtained with a system such as CT, MRI or X-ray c-arm. After the images are acquired, a window function is selected and temporally deconvolves the image frames using a minimization technique. A temporal sampling density also may be selected and used in the temporal deconvolution.
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