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Accelerating Impact

ISF Incubator calls for entrepreneurs who want to bring next-generation tech to big markets

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How Ingenuity Is Art: Top Invention Stories from February

In 2002, Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space said, “The difference between science and the arts is not that they are different sides of the same coin… they are manifestations of the same thing. The art and sciences are avatars of human creativity.” 

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Metamaterials: Bending Nature

When Nathan Myhrvold calls something “the closest thing to magic he’s ever seen,” it warrants a second look. Metamaterials are a new frontier, one the New York Times said “the waves of the future may bend around,” and we are investing a lot of time in their success. 

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Top 16 Invention Stories That Had You Talking in 2016

Transformative invention requires an element of idealism – calling on the dreamers, visionaries and optimists who imagine a better world. But truly life-changing invention demands more than just an imagination for a brighter future. There needs to be an element of pragmatism in invention – a trailblazer who creates an idea that bridges the gap between a vision for the distant future, and reality in the here and now. 

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News You Can Use: Don’t Just Think Big, Think Different

As Senior Vice President of Global Good and Research Maurizio Vecchione remarks, “innovation requires looking at a problem from a new perspective.” Our favorite links this month tell stories of outside-the-box thinkers — from students and scientists to mathematicians during the space race and even a 19th-century English noblewoman — whose unique outlooks on complex problems led to life-changing solutions.

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Invention Science Fund Partnering with NAMIC to Create New 3D Printing Technologies

There’s hardly an industry 3D printing doesn’t promise to revolutionize. From rocket engine injectors to life-like prosthetics, it’s undeniable that 3D printing, or additive manufacturing, is a huge field of technological opportunity. 

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Staff Spotlight: Kate Sharadin, Senior Director, Business Development

After nearly two decades on Wall Street and five years running a private consulting practice, Kate joined Intellectual Ventures (IV) to lead healthcare efforts focused on future invention strategy with the Invention Science Fund (ISF) and commercialization of existing inventions. With deep business knowledge in the healthcare and life sciences industries, Kate is focused on contributing to the business of invention that enables our world to become smarter, more livable, more prosperous, and simply, better.

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Staff Spotlight: Matthew Wahlrab, Manager, IP and Market Analytics

Matthew Wahlrab is constantly thinking innovation. As a Manager of IP and Market Analytics at Intellectual Ventures (IV) working in the Invention Science Fund (ISF), he’s relentlessly looking for ways to help customers solve vexing problems. Even during a recent vacation in Italy, while walking the halls of the Uffizi and marveling at the influence of the Renaissance, Matthew was taking cues from the past as inspiration for the future.

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Breaking It Down: Invention Sessions

A physicist, a research scientist, a physician, and a few inventors walk into a room. This could be the beginning of an IV joke, but it’s also our process of bringing together top innovators and inventors to brainstorm. We call these meetings “Invention Sessions” and our goal for them is clear: think of new solutions to solve the world’s most pressing challenges. Sounds daunting, right? But when we put brilliant minds from various backgrounds together, the potential is truly unlimited.

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Echodyne Spins Out from Intellectual Ventures

If you’ve been following IV’s spin-out story, you know that one area of focus for our company has been around developing and commercializing metamaterials, which are artificial materials that can manipulate electromagnetic radiation in a variety of useful ways.

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More than Meets the Eye

Intellectual Ventures’ Metamaterials Commercialization Center (MCC) focuses on exploring and accelerating the commercialization of metamaterials technologies. For those of us who forgot to take post-graduate physics, metamaterials are synthetic materials that have properties that would be impossible in nature. Metamaterials can manipulate incoming electro-magnetic radiation, such as light or radio waves, to redirect it in a variety of potentially useful ways.

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A Year’s Horizon

As this year comes to a close, I want to take the opportunity to look back and recognize some of the extraordinary events and milestones from 2013. IV has had the opportunity over the last 12 months to demonstrate the power and value of invention across a wide range of industries by collaborating with companies involved in agriculture, environmental packaging, scanning, photonics, and more.

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Kymeta Closes $50 Million Series C Financing

Kymeta Corporation, which spun out of Intellectual Ventures in August 2012, announced last week that it successfully closed a $50 million Series C financing round. Already backed by investors such as Bill Gates, Lux Capital, and Liberty Global, the financing group was joined by Osage University Partners and The Kresge Foundation. 

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Kymeta Named a Top 50 Disruptive Company by CNBC

Kymeta Corporation, Intellectual Ventures’ second spin-out company, has been recognized by CNBC’s Squawk Box program as one of the fifty most disruptive private, venture-backed companies. Kymeta and the other companies on the list were selected due to the threat that they pose to the status quo across their industry, their potential for hyper growth, ability to replace incumbents, and other factors. 

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Kymeta Partners with Inmarsat to Deliver In-Flight Broadband

Kymeta Corporation, Intellectual Ventures’ second spin-out company, has partnered with satellite communications provider Inmarsat to develop antennas that will connect business jets to Inmarsat’s Global Xpress high-speed satellite broadband network. The light-weight, flat-panel antennas use the metamaterials technology invented by IV inventors and developed at IV Lab before Kymeta was spun out in August 2012 to commercialize it.

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MIT Technology Review Honors IV Spin-out Kymeta

Kymeta Corporation, Intellectual Ventures’ second spin-out company, has been recognized by MIT Technology Review as one of 2013’s 50 Disruptive Companies. The publication’s annual list looks for companies that have demonstrated original and valuable technology and are bringing that technology to market at a significant scale. Kymeta is the only honoree this year for satellite communications technology.

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Dr. David R. Smith Joins IV to Commercialize Metamaterials Inventions

Intellectual Ventures has the world’s leading portfolio of metamaterials intellectual property thanks in part to work with pioneers in the field like Duke University’s Dr. David R. Smith and Imperial College’s Sir John Pendry. After almost a decade of development in this area, we launched a spin-out company – Kymeta Corporation – to commercialize the metamaterials satellite antenna designed and prototyped in our lab. While Kymeta marked an important step for our work, our pipeline of metamaterials inventions didn’t stop with satellite antennas.

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Introducing Kymeta

Today I’m excited to share that one of our great ideas has reached an important milestone. Kymeta, our second spin-out company, just closed its first round of funding with investments from Bill Gates, Liberty Global and Lux Capital. 

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TerraPower joins other big ideas in “Abundance”

From growing algae-based petroleum that eats carbon dioxide, to a “smart” energy grid that manages electricity consumption and storage as efficiently as possible, there’s no shortage of big ideas to tackle the growing global energy crisis. Dr. Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler touch on these solutions and more in their new book, “Abundance: Why The Future Will Be Much Better Than You Think.” 

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IV In the News – TerraPower and the Value of Ideas

With the recent passage of the America Invents Act and several new customer announcements, the last month has been a busy one at IV, and we’ve talked a lot about patents here on Insights. But IV has also made headlines in the scientific community, and we wanted to share some of our recent highlights:

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TerraPower Gains Insight from India Trip

Executives from TerraPower recently returned from India where the team continued ongoing meetings with energy experts and investors to listen, learn and discuss options for advanced nuclear concepts.

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TerraPower Engineers visit with OSU Students & Faculty

In early March, TerraPower engineers Josh Walter and Chal Davidson visited  with faculty, students and research staff at Oregon State University, Department of Nuclear Engineering in Corvallis, OR.  Watch as Josh and Chal explain TerraPower’s intention to design a Traveling Wave Reactor (TWR) that would improve upon the current generation of nuclear plants, field audience questions and discuss ideas behind TWRs and the implications of a TWR fleet. 

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