Have you seen big boxes around campus collecting your trash? Those are rStream’s AuditPRO units. rStream, founded by UMass alumni Ian Goodine and Ethan Walko, is a greentech startup aimed at solving the sorting issue in our waste stream. The two have won numerous awards, including the 2021 Innovative Challenge and Engineering Senior Design Showcase, BostInno’s “25 Under 25,” and grants from the National Science Foundation and MassCEC.  

Our waste stream faces many challenges. When people are left to sort waste themselves, only about 30% of recyclables are diverted from landfill. Often, contaminants enter the recycling stream and can render entire shipments of recyclable materials useless. While waste audits are helpful for understanding the composition and volume of our waste, they require a lot of time, labor, and space. AI-driven sorting provides a solution to all of these problems, giving real-time information on the waste stream while sorting waste with an accuracy of 90%.  

So, what are the systems doing on campus? rStream’s AuditPRO is not currently sorting waste at UMass. PRO stands for “pilot readiness optimization.” The system is building a brain for the AI, gathering information from a real-world waste stream. It is important to sort your waste when using AuditPRO, left for landfill and right for recycling. It is currently in Worcester Dining Commons, where it has collected data for over 2000 pieces of waste. For more information, visit rStream’s website or find them on local news outlets.  


Boston Globe 


Partnerships & Projects » rStream


AuditPRO Pilot​

About rStream

rStream is a waste robotics startup developing AI and robotics to revamp recycling and compost collection systems. The rStream AuditPRO is a patent-pending system which uses state-of-the-art AI technology to allow businesses to gather real-time data about their waste stream composition.

This project has been a collaboration in progress since 2019. The founders and UMass Amherst alums, Ian Goodine and Ethan Walko, developed the AuditPRO concept as students, won the 2021 Innovative Challenge and Engineering Senior Design Showcase. As a venture, rStream is now a National Science Foundation (NSF) and MassCEC award winning startup who has participated in a number of notable programs including the MIT Climate & Energy Prize and the Greentown Labs Incubator. They were recently listed as a “Top CleanTech Startup to Watch” by Boston Business Journal.

Our Project (August 2023 - Present)

  • August 2023: AuditPRO system installation in the UMass Campus Center
  • October 2023: Showcase Event in the Campus Center featuring rStream’s AuditPRO
  • January 2024: Began a new pilot at the Mullins Center