June 8, 2019Comments are off for this post.

2019 CITRIS Tech for Social Good Student-Led Teams

The CITRIS Tech for Social Good Program at UC Davis provides funding support up to $5K to student-led technology development projects in the interest of society. The 2019 funded projects include an app to support women in STEM, a medical supply delivery drone, a smart bin to sort recyclables, & a new pod design by to compete in the 2019 SpaceX hyperloop competition!


An App to Increase Women’s Belonging in STEM

In order to increase women’s belonging in STEM, this app serves as a platform for students to create opportunities to form meaningful communities and meetups, and to find mentors based on common interests. The app collects data on attitudes towards STEM majors and careers, retention rates, and efficacy for success in STEM.



  • Eric Harrison, Undergrad, Computer Science
  • Megan West, Undergrad, English & Sociology
  • Nathandis Wyley, Undergrad, Electrical Engineering
  • Susanna Zheng, Undergrad, Psychology


Hyperloop Pod 

The Hyperloop Pod Design Team at UC Davis is a student team dedicated to realizing the Hyperloop–a new mode of transportation based on pods moving at transonic speeds in a global network of vacuum tubes. Working towards this goal, we are competing in the annual SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition with the purpose of building a half scale, functional pod to race in SpaceX’s vacuum tube.

Learn more about the team here


Medical Supply Delivery Drone

According to the World Health Organization, around 400 million individuals do not have access to essential health services. Part of this is because of the difficulty in delivering medical equipment in remote areas lacking proper infrastructure. The goal of this project is to build a drone that can deliver one kilogram worth of medical equipment such as medicine and first aid to remote areas.


  • Sebastian Coronel, Undergrad, Mechanical Engineering
  • Trevor Metz, Undergrad, Mechanical Engineering
  • Yashdeep Sidana, Undergrad, Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering
  • Reiko Yoshizawa, Undergrad, Mechanical Engineering



To change an existing stigma around throwing away recyclables — an act thought of as time consuming, expensive, and stressful — SmartCAN categorizes trash and recyclable items and sorts them into their respective container.



  • Tayah Kirschenmann, Undergrad, English
  • Tara Soudbakhsh, Undergrad, Mechanical Engineering

October 12, 2017Comments are off for this post.


Competitive teams from the campuses of CITRIS and the Banatao Institute at UC Berkeley, Santa Cruz, Merced, Davis, and Davis Health submitted proposals for collaborative research projects for the signature seed funding program of the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS) and the Banatao Institute. Ten teams received a one-time award of up to $60,000 each for interdisciplinary work that can lead to larger research programs and extramural grant proposals. Out of the ten teams, eight included principal investigators from UC Davis.

For more about CITRIS Seed Funding, see the program webpage

Sustainable Infrastructures 

Multi-hazard risk analysis to inform distribution grid upgrades for reliability and resilience
Researchers will develop probabilistic methods for modeling regional power distribution networks exposed to different types of natural hazards.
Principal Investigators: Yu Zhang (UC Santa Cruz), Scott Moura (UC Berkeley)

Automatic building fault detection and diagnostic system using smartphones
Researchers will build a smartphone app whereby commercial-of-the-shelf (COTS) sensors are added to a mobile phone that can be used by facilities’ crews to detect and diagnose problems.
Principal Investigators: Alberto Cerpa (UC Merced), Avideh Zakhor (UC Berkeley)

People And Robots

Soft robotic, autonomous and intelligent wireless router (ScAILeR)
This project aims to demonstrate an intelligent system that can move autonomously, interact with, learn from, and adapt to its environment for optimal and robust functionality and survivability.
Principal Investigators: Michael Wehner (UC Santa Cruz), Ruzena Bajcsy (UC Berkeley), Linda Katehi (UC Davis)

Apparatus design for coral reef sampling, a biomimetic study of corallivorous fish
The project’s goal is to generate a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) apparatus for collecting hundreds, or even thousands, of coral tissue samples for large-scale genetic studies.
Principal Investigators: Hannah Stuart (UC Berkeley), Peter Wainwright (UC Davis)


Real-time detection of inflammatory biomarkers in exhaled breath
Researchers will design and benchmark a novel microfluidic total analysis system (uTAS) suitable for real-time detection of inflammatory and oxidative stress biomarkers present in exhaled breath condensate.
Principal Investigators: Cristina Davis (UC Davis), Nicholas Kenyon (UC Davis Health)

Active soft wearables, a novel approach to mobility and rehabilitation
Researchers will develop two test fixtures, for the upper and lower extremities, to systematically evaluate ergonomics and effectiveness of applying loads via active soft orthotic devices.
Principal Investigators: Fadi Fathallah (UC Davis), Michael Wehner (UC Santa Cruz)

New patient-centered visualization methods for predictive learning algorithms: a pilot study in heart failure decision support
This project aims to develop patient-centered, uncertainty-aware visualization methods for displaying predictions in context to uncover early warning signs and communicating decision support insights for both clinicians and patients.
Principal Investigators: Kwan-Liu Ma (UC Davis), Katherine Kim (UC Davis Health)

Policy Lab

Bots and misinformation on Facebook: prevalence, activity, and effects
This project will offer a foundational overview of the prevalence and activities of bots on Facebook, model the role of bots in the spread of misinformation on public Facebook pages over time, and identify bot influence on the hostility of user discussions.
Principal Investigators: Magdalena Wojcieszak (UC Davis), Gireeja Ranade (UC Berkeley)

Cognition to action in extreme events: policy interventions for disaster risk reduction
Researchers will use rapid prototyping to explore how to make city-scale transportation models, visualizations, and communication strategies effective and responsive to community needs when constituents must make life-altering decisions.
Principal Investigators: Thomas Maiorana (UC Davis), Kenichi Soga (UC Berkeley)

Women In Technology

Comparative analysis of interdisciplinary training for STEM scholars
This project seeks to collect comparative cross-campus data on two STEM graduate curriculums at UC Davis and UC Santa Cruz that make questions of gender and social justice fundamental to STEM training.
Principal Investigators: Kalindi Vora, Sara Giordano, and Sarah McCullough (UC Davis), Jenny Reardon and Karen Barad (UC Santa Cruz)



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