PUDDLE HOPS: Taxi to Takeoff | AI in Madison | St. Louis startup sends equipment to Mars

Taxi to Takeoff

COLUMBUS, OH—Taxi to Takeoff Aviation Academy is a new program offered to high school students enrolled in Ohio State’s College Credit Plus program to introduce them to the inner workings of careers in aviation. Aside from pilot training, the academy will cover aerospace engineering and maintenance, airport management, and logistics.

Madison could be AI powerhouse

MADISON, WI—A new report from Washington D.C.-based think tank Brookings Institution says Madison has the potential to become an artificial intelligence (AI) powerhouse. “Significant money is flowing into the region to support almost exclusive contracts or research and development initiatives,” explains Mark Muro, Brookings senior fellow and report co-author.

Chapel Hill’s new innovation district

CHAPEL HILL, NC—UNC-Chapel Hill and Town of Chapel Hill leaders have announced a new university partnership with startup co-working pioneer BioLabs. The partnership is designed to create a downtown innovation district that will attract, grow and retain more innovation-oriented companies and talent.

Changing how plastics are handled

MANHATTAN, KS—Each year, millions of tons of discarded plastic pollute ecosystems, harm animals and exacerbate climate change. Now, a $4 million award from the National Science Foundation’s EPSCoR RII Track 2 program will bring together researchers from Kansas and Delaware and fund work to improve how plastics are manufactured and recycled.

St. Louis startup sends equipment to Mars

ST. LOUIS—Startup Impossible Sensing develops next-generation optical sensing applications for deployment and operation in the most extreme terrestrial and extraterrestrial environments. Earlier this year, the NASA Mars Perseverance rover touched down on Mars with two pieces of Impossible’s equipment in tow. Here’s the story behind it.