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#Springboarding Forward - Island AquaTech Preps Prototype

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In October we reported on the success of three engineering students from the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) who created a startup business, Island AquaTech, out of a class project. With the help from UPEI's Synapse (a Springboard member turning ideas into solutions) and Springboard's Innovation Mobilization Proof of Concept and Patent funding, Dylan MacIssac, Brett McDermott, and Jordan Sampson were able to file for patent protection in 2017 for their innovation that will greatly support the oyster farming industry. 

The team invented a machine enabling oyster farmers to flip their cages easily, reducing the manual labour and time needed, greatly improving the performance of this critical task. In oyster farming, the shellfish are grown in floating cages needing to be flipped often during growth to kill off parasites like barnacles, algae and mussels. When the cages are flipped, these parasites are exposed to the sun, which kills them.

The oyster industry is very important for PEI, producing roughly 30 per cent of the farmed oysters in Canada.

Besides Springboard's funding, Island AquaTech also received non-equity funding from Innovation P.E.I.’s Ignition Fund. The team has by now built their prototype and will finalize its boat attachment design. Just before the winter, they tested their latest prototype with good success and now have to work out the last kinks, but the concept is proven.

To learn the business side of their startup, the team enrolled in the Creative Destruction Lab in Halifax and completed the first session in November and will return this month to CDL for the next session. The team is very excited about the possibilities that 2018 holds for them and we are excited to see their dedication and success and seeing them #springboarding forward.

To read the full article in Entrevestor, click here.