MSU startup Switched Source LLC took home $10,000 after winning the nationwide Pitch and Play Venture Challenge at the Association of University Technology Managers’ (AUTM) 2018 Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.
Switched Source addresses the current need for modernization in the way electricity is generated and delivered to consumers. The current electric distribution system is vulnerable to disruptions, natural disaster, and sensitive to power outages and brownouts. Their transformerless Unified Power Flow Controller (UPFC) enables cost-effective renewable energy to be efficiently incorporated into the existing power grid, generating potential cost savings of up to 40 percent.
The UPFC is based upon technology developed by MSU Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering professor Dr. Fang Peng and funded by a grant from the US Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Agency.
Charles Murray, Switched Source president, presented at the Arizona event. This is the first time MSU startups presented at the Pitch and Play competition.
“It is rewarding to see the growth of Switched Source, a company built on a foundation of research at MSU,” said Ray DeVito, PhD, CLP, technology manager at MSU Technologies. “They are a great example of turning university ideas into viable products to help solve the world’s biggest challenges.”
Academic-affiliated startup companies pitch their business opportunity to a panel of the top institutional and corporate venture investors in the country. Featuring both a venture capital discussion panel and a business plan competition, the event provides valuable experience and feedback to startup finalists.
AUTM is a nonprofit organization of over 3,200 members dedicated to bringing research and technology transfer to the forefront and has partnerships with over 800 universities, research institutions, and teaching hospitals globally.