Everywhere you turn, Dayton and Ohio innovators are getting it done during the pandemic.
Companies large and small are shifting gears from their usual products and services. Or they are refining flagships products to meet any number of needs in the COVID-19 era.
>>PHOTOS: See the innovators at work
Or businesses have simply met their moment, matching a great idea with current demands. The Dayton Daily News is chronicling the ways local businesses are innovating their processes and products.
Dayton’s Tempagenix is a good example of that.
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April Pollock and Shelly Heller formed Tempagenix LLC in 2016, channeling for the retail market the production of Dayton-made disposable paper thermometers that can be worn on one’s forehead. The thermometers are made made by CAVU Group in Moraine.
“We have grown to a $3 million business in about 17 days,” Heller told the Dayton Daily News earlier this month. “And there are only two of us.”
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In Dayton, Pelican Technologies has released its “Sparrow Clean-Point” QR-code product.
Sparrow Clean-Point uses unique QR code markers placed at various locations within a building in combination with Pelican’s Sparrow app. Each time an object that corresponds to one of those unique markers is cleaned or sanitized, the person who cleaned the area scans the Sparrow Clean-Point marker with a smartphone and their activity is recorded, Pelican said.
“This lets all our corporate tenants and visitors know how clean our building is,” Larry Walling, leasing manager of the Claypool building on Linden Avenue, said in a Pelican release. “It took 10 minutes to set up and two minutes to show cleaning staff how to us it. The report is updated every minute and colored areas show if someplace may have been missed.”
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Also in Dayton, Battle Sights Technologies is shifting from military and first-responder-focused battlefield and emergency technologies to make a more humble but much-needed product — hand sanitizer.
“We have a bunch of companies that are trying to take advantage and be of service,” said Scott Koorndyk, president of Dayton’s Entrepreneurs Center, a downtown Dayton haven and incubator for technology-focused business start-ups, like Battle Sight and Tempagenix.
Another example is Miamisburg’s epluno, which has launched an N95 mask refurbishment project.
The company is retrofitting and refurbishing precious N95 respirator face masks in a warehouse on Precision Court. Local customers include a hospital via a channel partner, which is getting 30,000 masks, more than 10,000 masks for a local county health department and several hundred masks for a local fire department. (In an email, epluno founder Paul Scapatici said he could not immediately name customers.)
“We’re trying to get this out to as many hospitals, groups and organizations as we can in order to let them know we’re here,” Scapatici said.
The company can be reached at (800) 249-5275 or email@example.com. epluno was founded for a very different purpose, to help schools craft e-commerce solutions.
Last week, software developed by a University of Dayton Research Institute (UDRI) scientist to quickly diagnose COVID-19 was exclusively licensed by a South Carolina software development company Blue Eye Soft, a company led by a UD graduate.
The technology, which detects the presence of COVID-19 in chest X-rays in seconds with 98 percent accuracy, was adapted from existing medical diagnostic software in a matter of hours, UDRI said.
Beyond Dayton, businesses in Ohio are making a mark, too.
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Battelle, a Columbus-based non-profit, has developed a “Critical Care Decontamination System” that can sterilize and prepare for reuse tens of thousands of respirator face masks every day.
That technology was important enough to be the subject of a phone call from Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine to President Donald Trump on a Sunday afternoon earlier this month. DeWine urged the president to push the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to permit an expanded emergency use of the technology, which the FDA granted that very evening.
And Abbot Labs, which bottles nutritional drinks in a Tipp City facility, says it has started distributing a rapid point-of-care test for COVID-19 for its ID NOW system.
The company has shipped more than 190,000 rapid tests to customers in 21 states. Abbot in recent weeks said it is producing 50,000 tests every day.
“We’re working 24/7 to make as many tests as we can and create the next round of needed tests,” the Abbott Park, Ill.-based company said. “Our scientists continue to work on additional COVID-19 tests across the spectrum of our diagnostic instruments.”