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James Dyson Award Finalists

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The James Dyson Award, which "seeks to single out the best in problem-solving student design," recently announced their regional finalists, selected from over 500 submission entries. The eventual international grand prize winner—announced October 5—will receive more than $15,000, with another $15,000 going to the student’s university department. Allison Arieff, Dwell's former editor-in-chief, and Amelia Amon selected the ten U.S. finalists, which range from inventions that put an end to texting-while-driving to an entire park designed for children with disabilities. The inventors of the U.S. National winner—a wheel that turns a regular bike into a smart, electric hybrid—will get to visit Dyson laboratories in the UK to participate in a workshop run by Dyson engineers.

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  Here's the US National Winner: the Copenhagen Wheel. Christine Outram and a team of MIT students invented of a wheel that turns a regular bike into a smart, electric hybrid. The Copenhagen Wheel allows riders to capture the energy dissipated when breaking and cycling and use it when they need it, like when they're biking up a hill.
    Here's the US National Winner: the Copenhagen Wheel. Christine Outram and a team of MIT students invented of a wheel that turns a regular bike into a smart, electric hybrid. The Copenhagen Wheel allows riders to capture the energy dissipated when breaking and cycling and use it when they need it, like when they're biking up a hill.
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  The mechanism is controlled through a rider’s smart phone, strapped onto the handlebars. The phone's GPS system also enables riders to track road conditions, congestion, and pollution levels.
    The mechanism is controlled through a rider’s smart phone, strapped onto the handlebars. The phone's GPS system also enables riders to track road conditions, congestion, and pollution levels.
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  Another bike-related winner, the Public Bicycle Security System, is a bike rack with an integrated lock and alarm. Flexible cable locks enable the user to lock all of the bike’s components, while a circuit embedded in the cable adds a second level of security: if the cable is cut, an alarm goes off, and a signal is simultaneously sent to authorities.
    Another bike-related winner, the Public Bicycle Security System, is a bike rack with an integrated lock and alarm. Flexible cable locks enable the user to lock all of the bike’s components, while a circuit embedded in the cable adds a second level of security: if the cable is cut, an alarm goes off, and a signal is simultaneously sent to authorities.
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  The SeaKettle is an emergency life raft that provides both insulated, reliable shelter and fresh drinking water. A passenger pumps sea water up to a Gortex covered reservoir. When the water evaporates, it hits the top canopy and condenses, filling the four pockets around the raft with fresh drinking water, which they can drink while waiting for rescue.
    The SeaKettle is an emergency life raft that provides both insulated, reliable shelter and fresh drinking water. A passenger pumps sea water up to a Gortex covered reservoir. When the water evaporates, it hits the top canopy and condenses, filling the four pockets around the raft with fresh drinking water, which they can drink while waiting for rescue.
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  Kee is an invention that prevents a car from starting until the driver inserts his cell phone into a dashboard unit; this disables all calls and messages and turns the phone into a simple-to-use stereo system. The goal was to prevent automobile accidents caused by driver distraction by taking cell phones out of the driver’s hands.
    Kee is an invention that prevents a car from starting until the driver inserts his cell phone into a dashboard unit; this disables all calls and messages and turns the phone into a simple-to-use stereo system. The goal was to prevent automobile accidents caused by driver distraction by taking cell phones out of the driver’s hands.
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  A monthly refillable HIV/AIDS Medical Kit, Empower By Me is designed to improve the lives of rural Africans. It contains 12 nutritional bars for when food is scarce, aspirins for side-effects, vitamins, a month of antiretroviral drugs, and a portable timing device.
    A monthly refillable HIV/AIDS Medical Kit, Empower By Me is designed to improve the lives of rural Africans. It contains 12 nutritional bars for when food is scarce, aspirins for side-effects, vitamins, a month of antiretroviral drugs, and a portable timing device.
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  Mantis is a fully adjustable portable dental chair that also doubles, when collapsed, as a dolly to carry bulky and heavy equipment. It was designed with non-profit medical organizations in mind; it can be carried as luggage rather than airlifted into the field.
    Mantis is a fully adjustable portable dental chair that also doubles, when collapsed, as a dolly to carry bulky and heavy equipment. It was designed with non-profit medical organizations in mind; it can be carried as luggage rather than airlifted into the field.
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  Parquinho is a series of modular playground equipment specially designed to supply the sensory input that children with autism need. The playground incorporates activities for both autistic children and those without disabilities, enabling them to play together.
    Parquinho is a series of modular playground equipment specially designed to supply the sensory input that children with autism need. The playground incorporates activities for both autistic children and those without disabilities, enabling them to play together.
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  Purify is a medical sanitizing station and automated all-in-one sink, intended for use in hospitals to decrease the high prevalence of work-related infections. The design incorporates existing Dyson Air blade digital motor technology in its delivery system, which cleans and dries users' hands issuing atomized soap, water, and high-speed air.
    Purify is a medical sanitizing station and automated all-in-one sink, intended for use in hospitals to decrease the high prevalence of work-related infections. The design incorporates existing Dyson Air blade digital motor technology in its delivery system, which cleans and dries users' hands issuing atomized soap, water, and high-speed air.
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  The Guardian Fire Suppression System is a new-and-improved take on a fire extinguisher holder. A spring-loaded door allows immediate access to the fire extinguisher, without getting confused about how to open the case or the risk of injuring oneself on broken glass.
    The Guardian Fire Suppression System is a new-and-improved take on a fire extinguisher holder. A spring-loaded door allows immediate access to the fire extinguisher, without getting confused about how to open the case or the risk of injuring oneself on broken glass.
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  This Travel Pack is designed to carry a bicycle on an airplane—it transforms from a single suitcase (carrying the disassembled bike) into two separate panniers, which can compress and clip onto the back of the reassembled bicycle once you get to your destination.
    This Travel Pack is designed to carry a bicycle on an airplane—it transforms from a single suitcase (carrying the disassembled bike) into two separate panniers, which can compress and clip onto the back of the reassembled bicycle once you get to your destination.

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