Polytechnic grads’ in-home greenhouse receives NSF funding

The GroPod under-counter appliance (Image provided)

Purdue Polytechnic graduates Ivan Ball (BS electrical and computer engineering technology ’17) and Scott Massey (BS mechanical engineering technology ’17) founded Heliponix (formerly Hydro Grow) in a campus apartment during their senior year. Their start-up produces the GroPod Smart Garden Appliance, an aeroponic mini-greenhouse that can be installed below a kitchen counter. Because the GroPod is only about the size of a dishwasher, it enables anyone – even yard-free apartment dwellers – to grow lettuce and other greens year ‘round, without soil or pesticides.

Recently, Ball and Massey received the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant, worth $256,000, from the National Science Foundation, to advance their GroPod in-home greenhouse technology. Once a business gains a Phase I SBIR grant up to $256,000, it becomes eligible to apply for a Phase II grant of up to $1,000,000.

Read the full Purdue Research Foundation story by Chris Adam.

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