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From Idea to Impact: A Case Study for Sustainable Innovation

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Case Studies in Entrepreneurship

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.623.1 - 23.623.19



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Paper Authors


Daniel Raviv Florida Atlantic University

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Dr. Raviv is a Professor of Computer & Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Florida Atlantic University. In December 2009 he was named Assistant Provost for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

With more than 25 years of combined experience in the high-tech industry, government and academia Dr. Raviv developed fundamentally different approaches to “out-of-the-box” thinking and a breakthrough methodology known as “Eight Keys to Innovation.” He has been sharing his contributions with professionals in businesses, academia and institutes nationally and internationally. Most recently he was a visiting professor at the University of Maryland (at Mtech, Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute) and at Johns Hopkins University (at the Center for Leadership Education) where he researched and delivered processes for creative & innovative problem solving.

For his unique contributions he received the prestigious Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award, the Faculty Talon Award, the University Researcher of the Year AEA Abacus Award, and the President’s Leadership Award. Dr. Raviv has published in the areas of vision-based driverless cars, green innovation, and innovative thinking. He is a co-holder of a Guinness World Record. His new book is titled: "Everyone Loves Speed Bumps, Don't You? A Guide to Innovative Thinking."

Dr. Daniel Raviv received his Ph.D. degree from Case Western Reserve University in 1987 and M.Sc. and B.Sc. degrees from the Technion, Israel Institute of Technology in 1982 and 1980, respectively.

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Alex Kotlarchyk

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From Idea to Impact: A Case Study for Sustainable InnovationAbstract This paper describes an on-going experience of working on an intelligent water-conservation project at ________ University. It is unique in the sense that the working settingsare different from an ordinary research and development project, and the intellectual propertyagreement is different from a standard university one. We have been working with a privateinvestor and entrepreneur who came with the original idea. He has been very involved in theproject with some business, humanitarian and environmental goals in mind in addition toacademic interest. We discuss different aspects of the project as it progressed from inception to commercialpromise, intellectual property, technical ups and downs, teaming and communication issues,problem solving, overlapping between academic and non-academic interests, potential benefits,and lessons learned. The paper discusses innovative, entrepreneurial, and practical componentsof the project. The project is about a new intelligent residential and commercial water sprinkling systemthat uses readily available internet-based weather information. Most current water sprinklingsystems are pre-programmed (mechanically or otherwise) by the end users. They take intoaccount neither past and present local weather conditions, nor weather patterns and predictions.This leads to waste of water, in particular during rainy seasons. Simple calculations show that inmany regions in the US, the use of internet-based information could save more than 30% of freshwater. The new system regularly extracts past and predicted rain fall data, from multiple websources, along with other weather conditions such as humidity and temperature. This is inaddition to local weather stations. This information, along with customer location, soilinformation, grass data, mandatory water restrictions dates and hours, date, etc., is fed into analgorithm that determines whether or not to turn on the sprinkling system. The decision iscommunicated to the client location via the internet and there, via local wireless communicationmethod, to the local water sprinkler unit. The process is estimated to be meaningfully moreefficient and less expensive than existing technologies that use on-site sensory data. It isenvironmentally friendly, simple to operate and maintain and can be constructed using low-cost“off-the-shelf” components.

Raviv, D., & Kotlarchyk, A. (2013, June), From Idea to Impact: A Case Study for Sustainable Innovation Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19637

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