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Ash project: Students from l’X at the Columbia Venture Competition

On Friday, April 5th 2019, students from the Ingénieur Polytechnicien Program went to the finals of the Columbia Venture Competition (CVC) held at Columbia University in New York City.

At the Columbia Venture Competition (CVC), Abel Adary, Louis Raison, Paul Roussel, Pierre Tholoniat and Enlin Zhu presented their project called “ASH” and won $5000. Ash was initially a Group Science Project (PSC), among the ten best PSC of l’X, that the students decided to develop with Julien Prat (in economy) and Daniel Augot (in cryptography), and which finally enabled them to participate in this contest between members of the Alliance Program.

Going to New York City was a great experience that allowed them to discover the entrepreneurial spirit in the United States: “We were prepared to present our project within the framework of the academic world, using a scientific rigor that was sometimes too heavy compared to the entrepreneurial spirit of this challenge. We learnt to pitch our presentation, to explain our project with simple and clear terms in English and it helped us to question parts of our explanations and to mature our project.”

This trip was also an opportunity to develop a solid network of entrepreneurs, among which other talented teams from partner institutions and to consider eventual future collaborations between them.

During their last year at École Polytechnique, some of the ASH members will study at the Columbia University. This first visit enabled them to discover its campus and facilities, the Faculty of engineering and to exchange with its students. “It was the first time in the USA for most of us and it was such a great experience that it makes us look forward to studying there next year.”

Read more: International Blockchain Innovation Challenge


ASH is a platform on which every participant can sell his creations without any intermediary. Encrypted offers transit then freely without the influence of any entity on the user. The peer-to-peer encryption protocol used by ASH helps to ensure the privacy of personal data through cutting-edge technology.