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ASU SkySong company wins innovation award


November 25, 2009

Ubidyne, a manufacturer of digital antenna embedded radio systems for wireless communications, won the 2009 Governor’s Celebration of Innovation (GCOI) Award for Start-Up Companies and shared the credit for their accomplishment with SkySong, the ASU Scottsdale Innovation Center.  

“Arizona is known for its strong culture of independent thinking and innovation, and ASU SkySong was instrumental in bringing Ubidyne to Arizona,” said Ubidyne CEO Ken Hawk. “They helped us get organized here, establish our home at SkySong and connect us to the incredible resources available through ASU. We are extremely grateful for the support from SkySong and proud to have been one if its early partners.”

ASU SkySong serves as a portal for companies to the resources and services of the university, offering entrepreneurship training, workforce development, research integration and business development assistance. ASU SkySong supports new technology start-ups with office space, access to business services and continuing training geared toward local innovators and global firms seeking to start operations in the United States. Ubidyne has taken advantage of many of these programs and services.

“We are truly proud to play a role in Ubidyne’s success,” said Julia Rosen, ASU’s associate vice president of innovation and entrepreneurship. “The whole building was buzzing when we received the news that they had won the Innovation Award. We just couldn’t be happier for Ken and his entire team.”

The GCOI Awards are presented by the Arizona Technology Council in partnership with the Arizona Department of Commerce and are selected by an independent committee of experts. The GCOI was established in 2003 and has become the premier technology community gathering in Arizona. This year’s gala event was held on Nov. 19, 2009 at the Orpheum Theatre in downtown Phoenix.

“Throughout the turbulent economy of 2009, innovation became more important than ever,” said Steven G. Zylstra, president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council. “It is essential that we celebrate the creative spirit of Arizona by recognizing and honoring the state’s most innovative thinkers.”

Ubidyne’s Antenna Embedded RadioTM technology integrates digital micro-radio units directly into the conventional antenna housing, eliminating the need for coaxial feeder cables, remote electrical tilt, and additional amplifiers on antenna towers and masts. This will help lower the basic costs of text and voice communications in developing nations while enabling more reliable, lower cost broadband wireless connections in more developed regions.

“We are developing a technology that has true global impact,” Hawk said.

In addition to Ubidyne’s award, ASU also received recognition as professors Qiang Hu and Milton Sommerfeld, co-directors of the Laboratory for Algae Research and Biotechnology, won the Innovator of the Year Award for Academia. Hu and Sommerfeld have developed a sustainable algal feedstock technology for production of a renewable petroleum substitute that can be converted to aviation fuel.