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LONGREACH sinks the opposition – crowned Dyson Award winner

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October 5, 2010

Samuel Adeloju's winning Longreach Buoyancy Deployment System

Samuel Adeloju's winning Longreach Buoyancy Deployment System

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The Longreach buoyancy bazooka designed by Samuel Adeloju has been chosen as this year's winner of the James Dyson Award competition. The system shoots an emergency aid out to those at risk of drowning while the emergency services ready the rescue proper. Once the aid hits water it rapidly expands to help keep the victim afloat. The SeaKettle desalination life raft and the REAX re-animation kit have taken the runner-up prizes.

Sydney's Samuel Adeloju describes his Longreach Buoyancy Deployment System as "a man-portable system that allows for the rapid conveyance of temporary, water-activated buoyancy devices to a drowning victim's location." The rescuer takes aim and then launches the buoyancy aid in the direction of the victim, which expands into a life ring upon contact with the water.

Samuel Adeloju's winning Longreach Buoyancy Deployment System

Currently in the prototype testing phase, the system is also equipped with Para-Flares for night-time illumination. Adeloju is working with scientists and engineers on a specially developed expansive foam to help ensure the product's safety and effectiveness. The system will shortly begin field trial testing with Surf Life Saving Australia.

This video explains what the Longreach system is all about:

Announcing the winner, James Dyson said: "Longreach is a smart solution to a very real problem. A product's functionality couldn't be more important when it's used to save someone's life."

The 24 year-old design graduate will now receive a GBP10,000 (US$15,902) cash prize and a visit to one of the company's research, design and development centers. His engineering faculty at the University of New South Wales will also receive GBP10,000.

And the runners up are...

Second place position has gone to a Gizmag Reader favorite, the SeaKettle life raft. Designer Kim Hoffman told Gizmag that she came up with the design "while at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco during the Spring semester of 2008. The objective was to design a product for an emergency situation. After doing much research, and starting off with a wide range of ideas, I narrowed down my focus to improving upon current life raft designs to help to prevent users from suffering from dehydration while stranded at sea."

Kim Hoffman at the SeaKettle presentation board

Sea water is had-pumped into a shallow reservoir located in the lower of two canopies. The sea water evaporates through a Gortex cover which lets vapor through but keeps salt molecules trapped. As the vapor reaches the top of the canopy, it's condensed to form drinkable water droplets which are collected in pockets at the bottom of the life raft's support arms.

Lars Imhof and Marc Binder from the University of Applied Sciences Northwestern in Switzerland take third place with the REAX re-animation system. Giving CPR can be a physically demanding and far from precise affair. REAX uses pneumatic muscle technology to compress a patient's chest at regular intervals and frees medical personal to perform other tasks.

Both runners up will be invited to visit one of Dyson's two research, design and development centers.

We offer our congratulations to all three winners and wish them well for the future.

About the Author
Paul Ridden While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.   All articles by Paul Ridden
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5 Comments

Trust an Aussie to find a use for spud gun technology! Aside from the live-saving application, I want to see a version of this made for paint ball combat.

Hogey74
6th October, 2010 @ 07:29 am PDT

Barrel 1 for life ring deployment. Barrel 2 for a sabot filled with shark repellent balls, just like paintballs, but with shark repellent inside.

Or fish oil balls, for when you need some long range chumming when going fishing. ;)

Facebook User
14th October, 2010 @ 08:12 pm PDT

You can't shoot a gun at a drowning victim! Also, its "long reach" is only 150 metres. Why do you need flares and a whistle at 150 metres? This is something that would have to be locked up for safety, and therefore will probably never be used.

At best it's useless, at worst it's a hazard. How long does the expanding foam last? The final irony would be that in actual use, the life ring falls into pieces before it provides any useful service.

Grunchy
17th October, 2010 @ 09:24 am PDT

I like this idea very much, but if someone is drowning are they capable of making their way to the life ring - even if it lands a few metres from them?

Yannick
21st October, 2010 @ 05:03 am PDT

Yes, most people are capable of swimming a few metres for a life-saving device.

People lost overboard from boats and ships at sea are currently 'thrown' a life-ring, but usually the boat has progressed on 100+ metres before anything is done, so lessening that gap would be useful.

Part of the problem is turning a large boat/ship around, so you want the brightly-coloured marker as close as possible to the man-overboard, especially in rougher seas. That is why all serious yachties, upon hearing 'man overboard' will appoint one person to do nothing other than to keep eyes on location of victim. The reason is that, if everyone runs around trying to get sails adjusted to go up-wind etc, then no-one remembers just where in that open sea the person was last seen.

This could help on commercial ships... but for passenger ships, an issue would be that it might need to be kept away from the 'drunken rabble', but could be mounted near rear of upper-most crew-only area.

Graeme Harrison, Sydney Australia

Graeme Harrison
29th November, 2011 @ 06:04 pm PST
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