Life-Saving "Buoyancy Bazooka" Wins 2010 James Dyson Award

The device could save hundreds of drowning people each year, who are far out of reach from hand-thrown life preservers.
A rocket-propelled life-preserver which can be launched up to 500 feet has won the 2010 James Dyson Award, one of the world's most prestigious student-design awards. Australian student Samuel Adeloju, who invented the so-called Longreach buoy, wins $15,000, as well as $15,000 for the industrial design department at his alma mater, the University of New South Wales.
The news caps a months-long process which began with hundreds of entries, which were winnowed down into country winners and finalists.
The key to the Longreach's design is clever use of foam that expands once it touches water. When dry, the buoy is shaped like a bullet, allowing it to be launched from a bazooka-like device. But when it hits water, the buoy expands to forty times its original size--in just 15 seconds--forming a ring-shaped life-preserver. Adeloju says that he's already in contact with search and rescue groups to mass-produce the invention.


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