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No-Itch Cast for Broken Bones Wins James Dyson Award

No-Itch Cast for Broken Bones Named Nz Winner of James Dyson Award

A lightweight and no-itch cast for broken bones has won the New Zealand leg of the thirteenth annual James Dyson Award, a global product design competition that celebrates, encourages and inspires the next generation of design engineers.
After breaking his hand, Victoria University design graduate Jake Evill (pron. ‘av-ville’) was fitted with a conventional cast. Itchy, difficult to scratch and impossible to wear under long sleeve shirts, Jake looked to design something better.
His solution, named Cortex, was to scan his fractured hand with a 3D printer to produce a reconstructed 3D model. Parts are then snapped together to create a snug fit on the broken limb and ventilation comes to the arm through its mostly ‘holey' membrane which is waterproof, breathable and light. The cast’s membrane provides extra reinforcement to where the bone is actually broken, versus engulfing the entire limb in a heavy cast.

The judges were unanimous in their decision. David Lovegrove, Fellow and professional member of the Designers Institute and the award’s head judge added: “Cortex is the re-imagining of the traditional plaster cast. It is a quite different take on what digital manufacturing can offer and could well change the way broken bones are treated in the future. It offers people with broken bones real benefits in terms of weight, comfort and convenience.
“Digital manufacturing was prominent in this year’s line-up, reflecting emerging market trends. The judges believe all three finalists have a real chance at commercial success. It has been the toughest judging year yet though Cortex came out marginally ahead due to its global reach in improving many people’s lives,”said David.
Twenty one year old Jake has won a trip to the London Design Festival with $3,000 traveling expenses and accommodation courtesy of British Council New Zealand. He will meet with other key members of the UK design community. He selects an official fee prize package from the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (IPONZ) tailored to his design’s intellectual property needs, a Dyson handheld cleaner and a year’s membership to The Designer’s Institute.

Supported by the James Dyson Foundation, the international design award is run in 18 countries and recognises emerging Kiwi designers who have developed inventions reflect the Dyson design philosophy, to make products that solve everyday problems.

Ten New Zealand entries, including Cortex and the two national finalists, will progress to the international James Dyson Award competition and could win $73,000 to help commercialise their ideas.
The international winner will be selected by inventor James Dyson and announced on 7 November 2013.

All entries can be viewed on


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