|By Marketwire .||
|October 13, 2011 02:42 PM EDT||
TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 10/13/11 --
Editors Note: There are two photos associated with this press release.
Dyson engineers have selected their top twenty entries to this year's James Dyson Award - and two Canadian projects have been shortlisted.
Montreal's Felix Lorsignol and Toronto's Michal Prywata and Thiago Caires were chosen from a field of 550 inventions from 18 countries. Next week, on October 18, 2011 they will learn if they will advance to the final fifteen.
The top 15, who will be named on October 18, 2011 will progress to the international final before the winner of the GBP 10,000(i) prize is chosen by James Dyson and announced on November 8th.
Lorsignol, a recent grad from Carleton University, is recognized for his invention of the BlackBerry Peer - an interactive, colourful and easy-to-use device that uses photo, video, audio and GPS capabilities to help today's parents keep in better touch with their children.
"I am really proud to have my work recognized by the James Dyson Foundation. It is an honour to be recognized among so many innovative designers by the foundation and it means a lot to me as a young, aspiring industrial designer," says Lorsignol.
Michal Prywata and Thiago Caires are being recognized for their one-of-a-kind product AMO Arm - a prosthetic limb that is controlled using brain signals. AMO Arm replaces an invasive, costly and lengthy surgical procedure, dramatically improving the quality of life for amputees.
Prywata and Caires have already turned AMO Arm into a successful business venture which includes development of assistance devices for paraplegics, various types of amputations, and non-invasive blood glucose meters for diabetes patients. The partners have built a company, Bionik Laboratories Inc., that focuses on developing of these medical devices and are currently securing their first round of investor funding.
See below for the full list of inventors moving on to the next round:
Problem: Parent's have fewer opportunities to communicate with their children as they work longer hours and lead busier lives.
Solution: The BlackBerry Peer offers photo, video and audio capabilities but also allows parents to know the whereabouts of their children at all times.
Dyson engineers said: "The BlackBerry Peer is a communications and camera device designed with children in mind. What makes it so great is that it's colourful and fun for kids while providing a much needed sense of security for parents."
Problem: The loss of an arm can often demand invasive muscle re-innervation surgery for full arm prosthetics.
Solution: AMO Arm bypasses the medical procedure. It can be strapped on and is controlled using brain signals, avoiding major surgery and the long rehabilitation period after.
Dyson engineers said: "It is quite incredible that so many complex movements can be achieved by thought alone. Very slick, very hi tech and very impressive."
Problem: Arthritis sufferers experience stiff joints which can effectively "seize up" and are difficult and painful to get moving again.
Solution: The device uses PVC air bags which fill to create a wave of pressure across the hand. This provides a massage and compression, both of which are beneficial to the sufferer.
Dyson engineers said: "This is a good product idea which is demonstrated by great rigs."
Problem: Hospital wards do not afford patients privacy and can be a breeding ground for hospital acquired infections.
Solution: KwickScreen is a portable, retractable room divider. Using Rolatube technology it increases the privacy, dignity and protection afforded to patients. It allows healthcare professionals to make the best use of available space and can be wiped clean to improve hygiene.
Dyson engineers said: "KwickScreen exploits the benefits Rolatube technology and is an hygienic alternative to dusty curtains. A slick project, brilliantly done."
Problem: Devices to manoeuvre patients in hospitals are often flimsy and impractical. This can contribute to back problems for porters.
Solution: MediMover is an aid to transfer patients from one hospital bed to another bed. The process uses minimal effort and eliminates the need to roll or lift the patient.
Dyson engineers said: "This is a good example of how good design can reduce the strain caused by an everyday task."
Problem: About 95% of people who suffer from a spinal cord injury require at least one intervention to initiate defecation. This is often aided by an insertion of a gloved finger into the anus which can be frustrating and embarrassing for patients.
Solution: The Suppostin suppository inserter removes the need for the insertion of fingers. In this way, it allows users to be more independent and dignified in their bowel care.
Dyson engineers said: "A challenging problem and a brilliant solution."
Problem: The white cane is an invaluable tool in guiding the visually impaired away from hazards, but it's not intelligent enough to guide them towards things, like a nearby friend.
Solution: Blindspot augments the existing white cane with technology to direct the user towards a chosen destination using an optical track button.
Dyson engineers said: "Designers should always consider how new technology can improve existing products."
Problem: The internet is highly visual and can be difficult for the blind and partially sighted to navigate. Existing products simply read the page content and can be confusing.
Solution: AudioWeb uses multiple voices to reflect text formatting, and music provides the context of where you are on the screen - making web use faster and easier.
Dyson engineers said: "A satisfactory program that helps blind people to use the internet seems long overdue - this is an improvement on the existing technology available."
Problem: The deaf and blind can suffer from a lack of access, communication and mobility.
Solution: This interactive glove helps not only the deaf but also the deaf and blind by using a range of stimulations and buttons to allow computer mediated communication.
Dyson engineers said: "DbGLOVE allows the deaf and blind to communicate at the 'tips of their fingers.'"
Problem: The current cost (approx. $5,000) and complexity of assembly of prosthetic arms is a huge barrier to helping amputees in developing countries.
Solution: The Open Socket prosthetic arm is mechanically controlled by simple body movements which allow the hook to be opened and closed and replace the function of a human hand. It can be fitted onto an amputee in under 10 minutes and costs only $100.
Dyson engineers said: "Open Socket is an ingenious answer to a longstanding need for a low cost, easy-fit prosthetics for use in developing countries."
Problem: Inhaling pollen and dust can cause nasty side effects such as coughing and sneezing, which are particularly acute among allergy sufferers.
Solution: Mymask uses a hypoallergenic adhesive that is safe for even the most allergy prone users. It is foldable, travel-sized and disposable.
Dyson engineers said: "Masks are often associated with hospitals, disease or severe pollution - there's a stigma attached to them. Mymask is a simple, portable and creative solution for asthma and allergy sufferers."
Problem: Children often associate hospital procedures with punishment, ultimately leading to an unhealthy mindset in later years.
Solution: Rabbit Ray is communication tool for hospital staff and children to explain blood taking and intravenous drips. Using a rabbit to demonstrate the child is shown how and why the simple procedures are taking place, allaying their fears.
Dyson engineers said: "Everyone remembers being terrified of injections as a child. Rabbit Ray is about prevention rather than cure - explaining something to a child through a medium they understand."
Problem: Disabled people and those in hospital are often unable to bath due to reduced mobility.
Solution: SARA is a water resistant chair that can be wheeled from room to shower. It's hygienic, safe and easy to use.
Dyson engineers said: "Bathing can be tricky, even impossible, for the immobile. SARA is a well designed and hygienic solution."
Problem: Finding adaptable furniture for a small narrow room is difficult.
Solution: Mobile Furniture uses link mechanics to create adaptable furniture - creating a dining table, cupboard, bed space, shelving unit and high table.
Dyson engineers said: "Amazing furniture design - fantastically prototyped. It is incredible that something so small can incorporate so much engineering and function".
Problem: Heating is an increasingly expensive commodity. Many heaters warm large spaces unnecessarily without directing it where it's desired.
Solution: STOVO is a rug made of three layers designed to transfer heat directly to a person. It has the potential to drastically reduce the energy consumption used for personal heating.
Dyson engineers said: "Very simple but canny idea. Why heat the whole room when you only want to heat a person? Heating the home accounts for almost 50% of UK energy consumption and associated carbon dioxide emissions."
Problem: We use vast amounts of energy in food production; every stage from growing, harvesting, packaging, purchasing and cooking can place a strain on our resources.
Solution: R2B2 uses a fly wheel, driven by a pedal, to generate and store electricity. This eliminates the need for electricity in food preparation.
Dyson engineers said: "We loved this how this technology engages the user with the whole cooking process; from the creation and storing of energy, to the preparation of food."
Problem: Millions of cups of tea are brewed around the world and each one uses a myriad of materials which negatively affect our environment.
Solution: You'd Better Drink Tea cuts the materials down to just one - a biodegradable plastic pocket which protects, brews and then stirs your tea.
Dyson engineers said: "A teabag and teaspoon in one. You'd Better Drink Tea enables the drinker to make a cup of tea with just one material, eliminating a lot of the waste from your daily brew."
Problem: Drought has devastating consequences, but there is an abundant source of water in the air around us.
Solution: Airdrop Irrigation feeds air though a network of subterranean piping, cooling the air and allowing condensation. It then pumps this water directly to the crops above.
Dyson engineers said: "We like how the designer engineered a very simple low cost product to help drought stricken areas. The clever idea here is how he's used cool subterranean ground to condense water out of the air."
Problem: An estimated 1.1 billion people in developing countries lack access to safe water. Current pumps break easily and cannot be repaired without specialist parts and expert knowledge.
Solution: The Flexi-Pipe Pump is a simple, reliable and low cost water pump powered by compressed air provided by a bicycle pump. It's lightweight, portable and can be installed and maintained by one person.
Dyson engineers said:"Flexi-Pipe pump addresses a valid issue in a simple, extremely clever, way."
Problem: Using a conventional mop and bucket means you're always returning dirty water to your clean floor. On top of which, most buckets require between 5 and 7 litres of water.
Solution: Ecoclean uses two receptacles in the bucket separate the clean water from the dirty water, so the two are never mixed. Instead of 7 litres of water, Ecoclean requires only 1 litre to work effectively. This cuts back on water consumption and contamination.
Dyson engineers said: "A simple, yet revolutionary re-invention of the traditional mop and bucket. This hygienic and eco-conscious design works with basic principles to solve two problems at once."
NOTES TO EDITORS:
The James Dyson Award
-- James Dyson will announce the global winner on November 8th, 2011. -- The International James Dyson Award winner will receive: GBP 10,000 (for the student or the team) and GBP 10,000 for the winner's university department. Runners up for the overall James Dyson award will receive GBP 2000 each. -- The award was open to any student of product design, industrial design or design engineering (or graduate within four years of graduation) who is studying or studied in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Ireland, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, UK and USA. -- The James Dyson Award is run by the James Dyson Foundation, a registered charity with the aim of supporting design, technology and engineering education, medical research charities and local community projects. The James Dyson Foundation works with schools and universities around the UK and internationally. -- Dyson is in the process of doubling the number of engineers at its UK research and development centre. Several previous award winners and runners-up have gone on to be employed by Dyson. -- For more information and news visit www.facebook.com/JamesDysonFoundation or www.twitter.com/JDF_Tweets.
(i)or local currency equivalent
To view the first photo associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://www.marketwire.com/library/20111013-AMOArm8.jpg.
To view the second photo associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://www.marketwire.com/library/20111013-BlackBerryPeer8.jpg.