RIT’s David Borkholder named ‘Distinguished Inventor of the Year’ by local law association

Microsystems engineering professor honored for sensor system that measures concussive events

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David Borkholder

David Borkholder, the Bausch and Lomb Professor of Microsystems Engineering at Rochester Institute of Technology, was named “Distinguished Inventor of the Year” by the Rochester Intellectual Property Law Association. The award ceremony was held June 15 at Monroe Golf Club.

Borkholder was honored for his work on the Blast Gauge® sensor system, which coupled with proprietary algorithms, captures and interprets complex data associated with concussive events. This data helps caregivers administer faster and more accurate treatment, and allows for better research for advancing the study of traumatic brain injuries. The Blast Gauge® System has been outfitted on U.S. Special Forces, the U.S. Army, SWAT teams, and law enforcement agencies around the world. This proven battlefield technology has been translated to the playing field with the Linx Impact Assessment System to address sports related concussions.

The sensor system is produced by BlackBox Biometrics, the company that was founded by Borkholder in 2011 and launched by Venture Creations, RIT’s business incubator, in 2014. Borkholder serves as the chief technology officer. In 2015, BlackBox Biometrics signed a $9.4 million contract with the U.S. Department of Defense.

Borkholder’s research spans biosensors, MEMs, medical devices, wearable technologies, and therapies for auditory dysfunction. He teaches courses in analog electronics, electrophysiology, biomedical sensors, microsystems and product innovation. He has published numerous articles in technical, educational and medical literature and holds several patents related to cell-based biosensors, DNA analysis and blast dosimetry. He was a member of the DARPA Defense Sciences Research Council, and currently serves as chair of the NIH Bioengineering of Neuroscience, Vision, and Low Vision Technologies (BNVT) study section.

Since 1976, RIPLA has recognized the “Distinguished Inventor of the Year” from the local community for contributions to the useful arts. Award winners represent a wide cross-section of fields—from academia and independent entrepreneurial efforts to Fortune 500 corporate research and development organizations.