Digital Biome

Posted on Tuesday, September 22, 2020

NSF Convergence grant involves data from global sensor network to predict pathogen outbreaks 

Vanderbilt engineers are leading the academic component of a massive Microsoft project that
combines robotics, genomics, big data collection—and mosquitos—to monitor the environment and detect potential pandemics and other threats before they cause widespread outbreaks.

Microsoft announced today expansion of its PREMONITION program and a large-scale pilot test in the Houston area. The Vanderbilt Institute for Software Integrated Systems, which has been working with Microsoft since the program began five years ago, is the lead institution on a related National Science Foundation Convergence Accelerator grant.

The NSF Convergence Accelerator supports use-inspired, team-based, multidisciplinary efforts that address challenges of national importance. Phase 1 grants provide up to $1 million for nine months for teams to build a proof-of-concept. Janos Sztipanovits, E. Bronson Ingram Distinguished Professor of Engineering and director of the Vanderbilt software institute, is the principal investigator the project, “Deep Monitoring of the Biome Will Converge Life Sciences, Policy, and Engineering.”

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