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Kiwi inventor sought for global design competition

Kiwi inventor sought for global design competition

James Dyson challenges young inventors to develop tomorrow’s technology today
James Dyson Award 2015 opens for entries

The prestigious James Dyson Award is now calling for ideas in product design and engineering for the 2015 competition.

First run in New Zealand in 2001, the competition is now global in its search for new and better ways to solve problems. In recent years thecompetition has discovered and supported inventors with ideas such as an inflatable baby incubator for developing countries, and a gelatin food label which indicates food freshness.

With a prize fund of almost NZD $200,000[i], the world’s brightest young engineers are challenged to design something that solves a problem. Students and recent graduates have until 2 July, 2015 to enter.

Entrants from 20 countries around the world will compete for a prize of NZD$60,000[ii] and a further NZD$10,000[iii] for their university. Last year’s international winner, MOM is an inflatable incubator for the developing world. It provides the same performance as a $60,000 modern incubation system, but costs just $500 to manufacture, test and transport. British inventor James Roberts has gone on to further prototype and test his invention.

“Young people have the power to change the world through engineering. Each year the James Dyson Award sees truly remarkable solutions to real-life problems all approached from different angles. No problem is too big and the simplest solutions are the best - use the award as a stepping stone to take your invention towards commercialisation,’ says James Dyson, the inventor of the world’s first bagless vacuum.

Wellington designer Zach Challies, was last year named the New Zealand winner for his new 3D printed shock absorbing undercarriage for prosthetic noses. After he realised people who had to wear prosthetics after injuries or surgery faced a second trauma – having their prosthetic accidentally knocked off when playing sports or being jostled in busy spaces - the Victoria University School of Design masters student designed a solution.

His concept is a dynamic, shock-absorbing scaffold fitted under the nose-shaped facade to anchor it against accidental movement. The base connects to three implants in the wearer’s skull via magnets. It can be printed for less than $50, significantly cheaper than a traditional model which ca cost up to $1000 to produce.

Zach received over NZD$4,000 from the James Dyson Foundation to invest in the development of the concept, and his design was put forward for international judging against entries from participating countries.

The New Zealand leg of the competition is supported by Dyson, The Designers Institute and the Intellectual Property Office of NZ who will provide the 2015 national winner with an official fee prize package tailored to his/her immediate intellectual property needs. The national winner will be announced in August.

Entries can be submitted to www.jamesdysonaward.org
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