Award

Innovator’s Prosthetic Socket Aids Boston Marathon Victims

Publication: NBC News   Date: April 9, 2014   View Article

A high-tech running shoe is worthless if it is two sizes too small and gives the runner blisters and pressure sores. The same goes for prosthetic limbs, according to David Sengeh, a 26-year-old graduate student from Sierra Leone who was honored Wednesday with an award for his work on an innovative socket that makes prosthetic limbs more comfortable and thus functional for amputees.

“Whether you have a robotic ankle or a wooden peg, if the socket is not functional you wouldn’t use your leg,” he told NBC News, explaining why he has focused his energy on developing next-generation sockets, or interfaces, for prostheses.

Solar cells that go anywhere win invention prize

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: March 8, 2012   View Article

Your windows, curtains and wallpaper may soon start harvesting energy from sunlight as it spills into your room thanks to a prize-winning inventor who is putting solar cells on just about any surface.

“The barriers to adoption and installation are reduced if you can really put these anywhere,” Miles Barr, who received the $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize on Wednesday, told me.

Technologist wins ‘genius’ award for sensor tech

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: September 20, 2011   View Article

Your credit card bill tells you how much you spent on gas last Tuesday, groceries on Wednesday, and football tickets on Friday night. Wouldn’t it be helpful if your electric bill did something similar?

This isn’t pie in the sky for Shwetak Patel, a 29-year-old technologist who received a $500,000 “genius” grant Tuesday for his work on inexpensive and easy-to-deploy sensors that can make our lives more efficient and enjoyable.

Materials wizard wins $500,000 prize

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: June 14, 2011   View Article

The man behind a stretchy heart monitor, an electronic eye camera, and a solar energy technology that is potentially price-competitive with coal has bagged a $500,000 prize for his creative, inventive mind.

John Rogers credits a fortunate upbringing by a physicist dad and poet mom, as well as a team of talented colleagues, for making him one of the most successful midcareer scientists in the country and recipient of this year’s Lemelson-MIT Prize.

Human-powered copter ready to rise

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: May 9, 2011   View Article

On Wednesday, Judy Wexler will pedal furiously, hoping to generate the force needed to lift a human-powered helicopter off the ground and win a $250,000 prize.

The biology student at the University of Maryland is a competitive cyclist with a desirable power-to-weight ratio and endurance, noted Brandon Bush, a graduate student in the university’s school of engineering and project team member.

‘Humanized mouse’ among student science prizes

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: March 9, 2011   View Article

A “humanized mouse” is among four innovations honored this year with the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize, an annual invention contest that comes with a $30,000 check.

The mouse has been outfitted with a liver that was engineered to be human-like, a step that could improve the safety and efficiency of the drug discovery process.

Youth Scholarships Raise Awareness of Kyoto Prizes

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: March 23, 2004   View Article

For the past three years, San Diego, California, has played host to an annual symposium to mark the Kyoto Prizes. Somewhat akin to the Nobel Prizes, the awards are presented by the Japan-based Inamori Foundation to honor scientific, cultural, and spiritual achievement.

The annual symposia gather prizewinners, scholars, and the general public to discuss the laureates’ achievements.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach