Sleeptite Research Partner Takes out International Science Prize
Sleeptite research partner, Associate Professor Madhu Bhaskaran from RMIT University, has won the prestigious APEC Science Prize for Innovation, Research and Education (ASPIRE).
Bhaskaran, whose engineering work is transforming the use of sensors, is leading the Sleeptite research program and was one of just three women among a field of 13 candidates from countries that included the United States, China, Russia, Malaysia and Canada.
ASPIRE is an annual prize of US$25,000, sponsored by Wiley and Elsevier, for scientists under the age of 40 who have demonstrated a commitment to excellence in innovation, research and education within the region. This year’s theme of Smart Technologies for Healthy Societies was chosen by Papua New Guinea to highlight the development of innovative solutions to health issues in the Asia-Pacific.
Working with her research team at RMIT University and Sleeptite partners Hexoskin and Sleepeezee, Associate Professor Bhaskaran’s sensors are currently being integrated into new health monitoring technology to improve the well-being and health outcomes for older Australians.
The Sleeptite sensors will allow ongoing biometric monitoring and provide real-time feedback on a user's state of health and sleep, enabling faster response times and ensuring Aged Care workers can direct their energy to the right room at the right time and therefore improve health outcomes for all residents in their care.
Sleeptite CEO Cameron van den Dungen said he was immensely proud of Associate Professor Bhaskaran and not surprised that she had received such a prestigious award.
“Since being introduced to Madhu (Associate Professor Bhaskaran) by the Australian Academy of Science I have been in constant awe of her ability and the technology she is creating,” Sleeptite CEO Cameron van den Dungen said.
“She is passionate about her field, but more importantly is passionate about taking her research out of a lab environment and implementing it into real world situations to change the lives of every day Australians.”
“The Sleeptite sensors that Madhu, in collaboration with the entire Sleeptite team, is developing will make a difference to the lives of Australia’s most vulnerable by providing nurses, carers and aged care facility managers with greater insight into the health and wellbeing of patients within their care in a non-invasive manner,” van den Dungen continued.
Minister for Jobs and Innovation Michaelia Cash congratulated Associate Professor Bhaskaran on her award.
“It is a great example of how Australia’s world class research and innovative thinking can lead to benefits shared in our region, and for Australia. Minister Cash said.
“Associate Professor Bhaskaran is an inspiration to young women who may be considering a similar career. The Government is committed encouraging more young women to study the STEM subjects which make such careers possible,” Minister Cash continued.
Women in STEMM Australia said Associate Professor Madhu Bhaskaran is a leading advocate for equity and diversity in STEMM, and is an outstanding role model for all girls and women.
“Women in STEMM Australia are thrilled Associate Professor Madhu Bhaskaran’s excellence in research and leadership has been internationally recognised by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation,” Women in STEMM Australia Co-Founder and CEO, Dr Marguerite Evans-Galea said.
“Madhu leads by example with a progressive, inclusive approach and this award will ensure her unwavering commitment to supporting all girls and women in STEMM in Australia, reaches across the Asia-Pacific,” Dr Evans-Galea continued.
An Australian scientist last won the Prize in 2013 when Dr Carissa Klein from the University of Queensland was recognised for her work in sustainable ocean development.