Republish this article
9th November 2014

What does a vacuum cleaner have to do with prosthetics, eye checkups and incubators?

James Dyson is the guy behind dyson. Yes, the vacuum cleaner dyson.

James Dyson is also a really creative designer who decided to give others a shot too. He created the James Dyson Award to encourage young design engineers to do something better, faster, stronger. And make our lives easier.

The third best thing about James Dyson is the brief he gave for the challenge.

Design something that solves a problem.

Luke Stairwalker is a supportive device that helps people walk stairs. Basically any stairs, something that the already available bulky (and quite expensive) equipment cannot do.

The ViFlex was developed to give everyone a pair of glasses. One of the greatest burdens in the developing countries, vision loss affects up to 700 million people. And a great majority of them do not wear glasses mostly because they cannot afford them. The concept of ViFlex is that anyone can build their own glasses to fir their prescriptions and looks. The DIY kit consists of a frame, a pair of lenses and a few wires and assembling it is remarkably easy.

WalkO is basically a walking stick 2.0 equipped with a hydraulic system that gives ease when standing up or walking stairs. It gives that extra help when you need to stand up forma n armchair. Oh and once you don’t need it you can collapse it so it fits right in your bag.

These are just a handful of amazing and inspiring projects that entered the James Dyson competition. But of course there has to be a winner, and the 2014 award went to:

MOM. An inflatable incubator designed for developing countries to give them a low-cost alternative to preemie care. The flat-pack makes it easy and cheap to transport giving a possibility to reach the remotest areas.

With thousands of deaths each year because of lacking premature care, this invention is a true lifesaver for those who need it most. At one tenth a cost it can do the job of current incubators: keeping the baby warm and safe.

You are free to share this article under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported license.

Header Photo credit:

We value your privacy

We use cookies to speed up your navigation of the website, recognize you and your access privileges, and track your website usage. We may use third-party companies to further customise your experience and make it more relevant to your needs and interests, both on this website and third-party platforms.

Learn more