LilyLoop wins the 2024 Y-Prize competition

Biodegradable sensor tampons, wearable jewelry technology, and an app for timely tampon change reminders awarded LilyLoop the annual award.

This year’s winner of Penn’s Y-Prize is LilyLoop, a line of “smart” period products that alerts users when to change tampons and captures menstrual flow data for diagnostic purposes.

The LilyLoop team holding their certificates with the awards panel members.
Team LilyLoop is Neha Chelamkuri (front row left), Kylie Chang (front row middle), and Rima Chavali (front row right), who presented their business plan and fielded questions from a panel of expert judges from academia and industry. (Image: Courtesy of the Mack Institute for Innovation Management)

One in five American women suffers from menorrhagia (heavy menstrual bleeding), which can sometimes result in serious complications such as anemia and infertility. Despite how common menorrhagia is, doctors often struggle to diagnose it because patient data related to menstrual flow is self-reported. Patients are often asked questions like how many pads or tampons they use, but that doesn’t capture the precise data needed to recognize when a heavy flow becomes medically dangerous.

LilyLoop proposed a line of pads and tampons that each contain a tiny, body-safe sensor that sends moisture levels to a discreet wearable that interprets and sends data to an app for precise menstrual flow insights. LilyLoop will initially focus on patients with diagnosed uterine fibroids, a leading cause of menorrhagia. From there, they hope to expand to provide the product to a broader consumer base.

Team LilyLoop is Kylie Chang, a computer science and finance student at the Wharton School and the School of Engineering and Applied Science, Rima Chavali, a life sciences and management student at Wharton and the School of Arts & Sciences, and Neha Chelamkuri, a life sciences and management student.

For over 10 years, the Y-Prize competition has challenged students to build their entrepreneurial skills. Students team up to create business plans using technology invented at Penn Engineering. The team with the best commercial application wins $10,000 to help make their idea a reality. It is cosponsored by the Mack Institute, Penn Engineering, Venture Lab, and the Penn Center for Innovation.

Read more at the Mack Institute for Innovation Management.