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FIU to showcase tech and entrepreneurship at eMerge Americas 2019

MIAMI (April 23, 2019) – For the sixth consecutive year, FIU is bringing its latest technology and most promising startups to eMerge Americas 2019, the international tech conference centered around digital innovation.

“I am pleased that our passion for innovative, research-driven solutions and our high performing students will be on display at eMerge,” said FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg.

This is FIU’s sixth year participating in eMerge Americas, which will be held at the Miami Beach Convention Center, 1901 Convention Center Dr., Miami, FL 33139, on April 29 and 30, 2019. Exhibits at FIU’s pavilion will include:

Hacking smart devices via sensors

Researchers from the College of Engineering & Computing will demonstrate how easy it is to hack into someone’s smart watch and other smart devices using a specific light pattern on a smartphone, like a flashlight. This could allow a hacker to steal someone’s bank account details, social media passwords, and other important information. The demonstrations underscore how current malware tools do not recognize threats in malicious apps and highlight FIU researchers’ efforts to improve the security of smart devices.

Transforming origami antennas

Also from the College of Engineering & Computing, Professor Stavros V. Georgakopoulos and his research team will display their foldable origami antennas systems, which can change their shape to adapt to varying conditions. These lightweight antennas can be compactly stowed, easily collapsed and quickly deployed, and are expected to provide groundbreaking capabilities to military communication, reconnaissance, as well as sensing and energy harvesting systems that are used by aircraft, drones and satellites. Designed for the next generation of Department of Defense systems, the innovative antennas will also allow soldiers to share intelligence from the field.


Entrepreneurs that are working with StartUP FIU to develop business concepts will bring their ideas to emerge Americas, including:

  • 300 Technologies – Founded by Robert Aratari, 300 Technologies produces the Clean Air Muffler System (CAMS), which reduces carbon monoxide emissions. It is compatible with most small commercial generators and gasoline-powered equipment.
  • Graupel - Utilizes 3D scanning technology to capture 150 body measurements to get customers’ exact fit. The company then connects customers with independent designers, letting them shop for designs that are ideal for their body sizes and measurements. Graupel’s goal is to help eradicate size shame in the fashion industry by abandoning anticipatory sizing.
  • Mandatum – Founded by Damian Estrada, Mandatum is a Google Chrome extension that alerts online shoppers to lower prices as they browse the Internet.
  • Merkari – Founded by Francisco Garcia, Merkari is a digital marketing solutions partner that helps organizations build their digital marketing expertise.
  • NIROS Technology – Founded by Professor Anu Godavarty, NIROS is developing a safe hand-held optical scanner to help wound care specialists take images under the skin and improve prognoses in the wound healing process.

Two FIU engineering and computer science teams are also participating in a Shark Tank-style pitch competition to showcase their initiatives. Held April 30 between 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., this competition is hosted by the Florida Intercollegiate Competition in Technological Innovation (FICTI) in room 211 on the second floor of the convention center.

The future underwater experience

The Medina Aquarius Program in the College of Arts, Sciences & Education features the world’s only underwater research laboratory, a tool unlike any other on the planet. Here, marine scientists can live and work among their research subjects for days and weeks at a time. Companies can test the limits of the newest technologies. It is the ultimate training site for extreme environments. For nearly three decades, Aquarius has been pushing the limits of science. Now, planning has begun for an entirely new marine habitat limited only by imagination — Aquarius 2.0.

Making the undetectable detectable

Researchers at the International Forensic Research Institute, also in the College of Arts, Sciences & Education, have invented the portable Venturi vacuum device. It can collect DNA left behind at a crime scene, pollen from fabric and even fungal pathogens inside trees. Ideal for crime scene investigations that currently rely on rudimentary cotton swabs, the Venturi vacuum device does not require electricity to retrieve previously undetectable trace evidence. It also offers a solution for industrial operations searching for a better way to retrieve hard-to-collect materials.


About FIU:

Florida International University is Miami’s public research university and in less than five decades has become a top 100 public university, according to U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges. FIU is focused on student success and research excellence, with nearly $200 million in annual research expenditures. The Next Horizon campaign is furthering FIU’s commitment to providing students Worlds Ahead opportunities. Today FIU has two campuses and multiple centers, including sites in Qingdao and Tianjin, China, and supports artistic and cultural engagement through its three museums: Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum, the Wolfsonian-FIU, and the Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU. FIU is a member of Conference USA, with more than 400 student-athletes participating in 18 sports. The university has awarded more than 330,000 degrees to many leaders in South Florida and beyond. For more information about FIU, visit

Media Contact:
Lourdes Perez
305 348 6944