10 Irish entrants who wowed the James Dyson Award judges


10 Nov 201529 Shares

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After the success of Cathal Redmond at the global 2015 James Dyson Awards today, here are 10 of the brightest young minds in Ireland who made the world stand up and take notice.

Cathal Redmond – 2015 global runner-up

Cathal Redmond is the man of the moment today, having made history with his underwater breathing system, Express Dive. The University of Limerick graduate was named joint runner-up in the international final of the 2015 James Dyson Awards, marking him out as one of the world’s top young inventors.

Redmond’s €7,000 prize fund will go towards developing the Express Dive system, which allows divers to breathe underwater for longer and for less than the cost of a traditional scuba kit.

Eilis Delaney – 2015 global finalist

Of course, Redmond wasn’t the only Irish inventor to make it to the illustrious 2015 final, with Dublin Institute of Technology student Eilis Delaney also selected among the 20 on the shortlist of international contestants. Delaney’s Sense technology can be retrofitted to standard firefighter helmets, enhancing this protective gear with an ultrasonic proximity sensor and a vibration system to warn of obstacles.

Eilis Delaney with members of Dublin Fire Brigade testing the Sense. Image via Itziar Telletxea Rocha

Eilis Delaney with members of Dublin Fire Brigade testing the Sense. Image via Itziar Telletxea Rocha

Darren Lehane – 2014 Irish James Dyson Award winner

Cork man Darren Lehane won the Irish leg of the James Dyson Award last year. After witnessing his cousin struggle with feeding tubes after her birth, Lehane developed a technology called Nutria that aims to prevent the fatal risk of incorrect insertion of feeding tubes in patients’ stomachs. Lehane, who had just completed a BA degree in product design and technology at the University of Limerick when he won the prize, is now a junior designer with Synecco.

Darren Lehane

Darren Lehane with his feeding tube concept.

Aoife Considine and Alberto Cañizares – 2013 Irish James Dyson Award winners

In 2013, both aged 22, Trinity College Dublin (TCD) students Aoife Considine and Alberto Cañizares managed to impress the Irish judges of the national James Dyson award with their ‘cool’ invention called Boundless.

Both keen engineers and snow sports enthusiasts, Aoife and Alberto decided that they wanted to greatly improve the design of the snowboard, particularly by adjusting the binding that keeps the user connected to the snowboard.

Their Boundless snowboard offers a 360-degree rotational binding attachment that goes between board and binding, which enables bindings to be unlocked, quickly adjusted and re-locked into another position depending on the user’s needs.

Today, the two are both based in London, with Aoife working as a graduate mechanical engineer on major projects for Transport for London, while Alberto is currently studying for his master’s degree in aeronautical engineering at Imperial College London.

Aoife and Alberto Boundless

Aoife and Alberto with their Boundless snowboard.

Mark Dillon – 2013 global finalist

Mark Dillon was shortlisted for the global 2013 James Dyson Award thanks to Mamori, a sports gum shield with integrated sensor measures that transmit data to medical staff at the side of the pitch.

The DIT student’s invention really was a product of the times, with 2013 the year that concussions in sport really began to make the news.

Thanks to Mamori, if a concussion has occurred, medical staff can react quickly and remove the player from the game and treat him before potentially fatal second impact syndrome can occur.

Mark Dillon mouth guard

Mark Dillon’s Mamori gum shield.

Paddy Mulcahy – 2012 Irish James Dyson Award winner

Limerick student Paddy Mulcahy won the Irish leg of the James Dyson Award back in 2012 with his innovative hospital creation, U-neat.

A sanitary hospital bed table and locker, U-neat was devised to help curtail the spread of hospital-based infections. This came on the back of his own research, which found that more than 70pc of the spread of infections in hospitals was down to surface-to-person bacterial transfer.

Paddy Mulcahy

Paddy Mulcahy with the U-neat.

Jonathan O’Toole – 2010 global finalist

Jonathan O’Toole was a global James Dyson Award nominee in 2010 for his invention, Siúl Skool.

Siúl Skool was a paediatric treadmill designed to help children and infants with disabilities to walk. Using stimulus to encourage the child to complete their physiotherapy sessions, Siúl Skool helped to build muscles, reduce tightening, and improve gait and balance.

The University of Limerick (UL) student of Product Design and Technology developed Siúl Skool in collaboration with Caroline Tuelier of the UL Department of Physical Education and Sports Science.

Jonathan O Toole

Jonathan O’Toole with the Siúl Skool.

James D’Arcy – 2010 global finalist

James D’Arcy, a University of Limerick student, made it to the global awards in 2010 for his oxygen delivery system Flo2w.

D’Arcy beat off competition from hundreds of hopefuls, making it to the final 20 with his design for a more subtle, more inconspicuous oxygen mask than those already in use. The device fits to a patient’s head using an adjustable headpiece, and delivers oxygen through nasal tubing.

Flo2w was purported to provide a new way to regulate oxygen, making it easier for both patient and healthcare practitioner.

James D'Arcy and the Flo2w.

James D’Arcy and the Flo2w.

Noel Joyce – 2009 Irish James Dyson Award winner

Noel Joyce won the Irish James Dyson Award in 2009 for his hydraulic wheelchair brake invention. Since then he established the DesignHub collective, which launched a Maglus pen for touchscreen devices and counted NASA among its customers. Joyce also served in the Irish Army for five years and he is currently the head of design at Hax.

Noel Joyce

Noel Joyce duing the development of his hydraulic wheelchair brake.

Number 10 image via Shutterstock