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Celebrating UW Asian/Pacific American Innovators

Written by Debra Bouchegnies / May 25, 2022

In celebration of National Asian American, Native Hawai’ian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, CoMotion recognizes these UW researchers making significant impact in their fields. They are advancing innovations in biomedical data analysis, biological and medical applications, imaging technology, wearables and human-machine interaction, air quality monitoring, and smart mobility solutions. Researchers received funding and/or training from a number of CoMotion programs including I-CorpsIdea to PlanPostdoctoral Entrepreneurship Program and Innovation Gap Fund. In addition, some will be pitching at DubPitch today, a biannual event bringing UW startups and early-stage innovators together with investors and venture capitalists.

Jae-Hyun Chung

Associate Professor, UW Mechanical Engineering

Dr. Chung is the co-founder, advisor, and a board member of Somalytics, a UW spinoff producing a nanotech-infused paper-capacitive sensor that addresses the challenges in eye tracking, wearables, and human-machine interface. Due to its miniaturization, speed, and power advances, their innovative sensor is opening entirely new application areas. Somalytics was recently named a finalist in Fast Company’s 2022 World Changing Ideas Awards.

Ka Yee Yeung

Professor, UW Tacoma School of Engineering and Technology, and Associate Dean for Research and Innovation; Adjunct Professor, UW Microbiology

Dr. Yeung’s research focuses on the development of methods and containerized cloud-enabled software tools to facilitate the reproducible analyses of big biomedical data. Yeung is also CEO of UW spinoff BioDepot LLC, a software company that finds new ways to reduce costs and improve performance of big data analyses on the cloud.

Jiayang (Joe) He

Ph.D., UW Mechanical Engineering

Dr. He is the team lead for AeroSpec, an air quality monitoring platform with a special emphasis on data analytics. The platform focuses on using an air quality monitor, mobile app, and online dashboard to make air quality information more accessible and actionable to everyone.

Robert Miyaoka

Research Professor, UW Radiology; Director of Small Animal PET Imaging; Director of SPECT/CT Physics

Dr. Miyaoka and his colleague Dr. Larry Pierce were recently awarded a grant from the National Institutes of Health for their imaging technology that seeks to revolutionize nuclear medicine and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT). Their technology enables a more than 2000-times gain in sensitivity as well as a 100-fold improvement in volumetric image resolution. They also recently received a WE-REACH grant to further support the commercialization of their technology.

Miqin Zhang

Kyocera Professor, UW Materials Science & Engineering; Adjunct Professor, UW Radiology; Professor, UW Neurological Surgery; Adjunct Professor, UW Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine; Adjunct Professor, UW Bioengineering

Dr. Zhang’s research is geared toward developing materials and devices for biological and medical applications, which can be broadly categorized in three directions: nanoparticle, tissue engineering, and biosensor.

Wei Sun

Ph.D., Research Associate, UW STAR Lab

Dr. Sun is a research associate at UW STAR Lab (Smart Transportation Applications & Research) and the co-founder of AIWaysion. The UW spinoff provides smart mobility solutions leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) and edge computing technologies for safer and more efficient transportation.