Take 18-year-old Philip Streich. His method for untangling carbon nanotubes may well pave the way to the creation of a space elevator. Daniel Asturius's geothermal energy generator could produce three times as much power as a nuclear plant. Samantha Hopkins? After she built her own log cabin at the age of nine, she went on to design a lunar chamber that can grow food without soil, self-heal punctures, and shrink to the size of a backpack for easy portability.
Anne Swift, the founder of Young Inventors International, an organization that helps inventors develop, patent, and license their inventions, says that youth, far from being a handicap, often works to inventors' advantage. "Young innovators might not realize what is possible, so they tend to dream big," she says. "They look at it and say, Wow, we can do this."
Here, meet some of the most promising youth to hit the invention scene, and find out which institutions of higher learning will lay claim to their genius.
Why can't i see the gallery?
My cousin tyler moser is in this magazinem i would love to see it.
This is the type of news that should be on front pages of major magazines. I subscribe to PopSci and wanted to share this aqrticle and the young inventors using a link for my friends. It's a shame you deny access to truly deserving young Americans.
For 100+ years we have had an education system geared to turn out factory workers and mid-level management.
As those jobs dry up, never to return, we need to take a good hard look at how we are preparing our kids to meets the needs of this new creative economy.
Innovation is the key, and I love to see stories like this that highlight the achievements of the next generation.
I am 19 years old. In my senior year I was the team captain for our schools super mileage team. In that same year, I also competed in a regional 3d solid drafting competition where I took 2nd place losing only to my identical twin brother.
After that I started to compete in SkillsUSA. I won 1st in the state of Minnesota for high school level Mechatronics. Then, I took 2nd place in the nation.
Now, as a 19 year old Mechanical Design Intern at a global company that builds high quality hydrolic systems for testing applications, I know what I want to do with my life. Like these people in this article I too am planning on doing something big with my life and I am excited to see it through!
Ah man. This makes me feel like an idiot child. Im studying to become a mechanical engineer but Im still searching for that prized invention or at least the inspiration to invent. Haha and what is with PuffNStuff326? Hahahaha. Had an uncontrollable need to show off? Hahahahaha.
I PUFFNSTUFF326 KNOW WHERE IM GOING. I PUFFNSTUFF3...2...6 TOOK SECOND PLACE. I ARE BAD. I ARE AS GOOD AS PEOPLE IN PICTURES. I ARE PUFFNSTUFF3...2!...6!
Ok...sorry. Im done.
I love articles like this. My son will be reading this tonight.
Love, Peace & Soul
This country's future lies in the hands and minds of these young heroes. They are the new american revolution! We need to do more for them.
I'm disappointed that most of them were given a few grand here and there. They should have entire programs setup for them and be fully funded.
Hopefully these kids will grow up to be the next American leaders and eventually put an end to the prevailance of mediocrity and ignorance like we've seen in leaders like Bush and Palin.
Let's keep working hard and moving forward
I started several online businesses all the way from the age of 14. I am currently 16 years old and am trying to start up a tech company like Apple.
My advice is, if you want to work like most people on a daily basis when you are an adult for the rest of your life, follow the education system. If you want to be your own boss or create your own path, study yourself.
Wow, I think my favorites are the Aeroponic Food Chamber for the Moon and the Nasal Spray that Regulates Sugar Levels in Diabetics. But, most of all I like the fact that these kids are so smart and inventive. "I believe the children are our future" and "the future's so bright, I gotta wear shades." LOL
Hey, the headline for this article has a big error: Only 5 out of 8 of these kids are in High School. The other 3 are homeschoolers; they don't go to High School!
And, what an incredibly high percentage for Home Schoolers! Woo-hoo!
Notice that two of these young people were home schooled and not "dumbed down" for their ceativity.
Someone care to inform blaxpear that this is not a political
blog? We all hope and wish for an end to the prevalence of mediocrity and ignorance. It all starts and ends in school.
Future young inventors and leaders are better served when educators encourage them to question everything. Too often their heads are filled with mush.
Better that they study and discuss the philosophies of Jefferson and Jackson, who fought the elitizm of England and promoted the idea that regular citizens set aside commerce to serve their country in Congress... a far cry from todays elite set of lawyers serving as professional life-time politicians (that is, when are students are not studying science). Putting more science in the classromm will serve our society greater than any other incremental extra thing we might do.
Inventing is addictive and I suppose I am an addict.
Many inventions come about because of years of research at the boundaries of known science, others out of luck. You never know in advance where the path you are on will lead to.
It costs a small fortune to take a concept and take patent applications to grant world-wide. At any point the invention can fall over due to what is called 'prior art'.
In one of my applications someone filed for something identical three days before I did. In another I was hit with prior art from 1876. In both cases I found out before spending the big bucks.
Protecting any invention is critical. US Patent Law has recently been 'enhanced' so that it comes more into line with the rest of the world. This is to stop patents that have no inventive step. Things like anti-gravity machines. Believe it or not there are numerous granted US patents for these and other stupid 'inventions'. Time machines is another example, as are perpetual motion devices.
For an invention to have merit IE make some money, it has to do something better or cheaper. In other words it has to have a commercial advantage that can be exploited. If it doesnt then the whole exercise becomes pointless (and expensive) Unfortunately that vast majority of inventions dont have a commercial advantage. Fundamental patents are a sort of closed book; very few will come about in the future so that leaves upgrades. That doesnt mean that there are not opportunities, there are lots. Basically it all about creating a better mousetrap.
Once in a blue moon a fundamental invention comes along but even then that doesnt mean the inventor will make any money.
If you work for a company and you invent something, you dont own it, your company does (there are exceptions). if you are independent you need very deep pockets to fund a patent and the resource to survive because patents take years to obtain. Even then you can be challenged if you have stepped on someone's toes and you need even deeper pockets once things get all legal.
The US has an EXCELLENT low cost system to help inventors. For under $100 you can file a provisional patent. It is never published. It creates a time stamp called the priority date. It gives you 12 months protection whilst you figure out what to do with it. If all the lights are green you can then file for a full patent that is back dated to the priority date.
Three years ago we filed 6 provisionals in the US. We were in a race against time because a 'hot topic' had lots of other inventors chasing after the same thing. Two years ago a full patent was filed in the UK, claiming priority from the US provisionals. 3 of the patents were kicked out because of prior art. The remainder where rolled into one and granted.
Many patents and applications are based on theory that is unsound. We dont file for a patent unless we have done our homework up front. There is NO point filing if you cannot prove the concept actually works in the first place and more importantly works as it is supposed to.
I see numerous examples of this every week, especially in the renewable energy field. Patents are filed almost blind and based on a single layer of physics or science. These are drowned why the other layers come into play. Sometimes the inventor doesnt know in advance what these are but others do know and they extract money under false pretences.
Inventing really is like walking through a large minefield. It is a great feeling getting from one side to the other and that is what causes my addiction.
Knowing when to walk away or slit the throat of a project is a hard lesson to learn but also a very important one. I've experienced more failures than sucess. One thing is for sure though, you learn a great deal in the process and it doesnt half make you cynical !
Wow! Thats really cool! And some of these students were home schooled! I wonder if they went to an <a href="http://www.libertyonlineacademy.com/">Accredited Online High School</a>, or were taught by their parents?
Wow they're lucky. I'm curious if they're taking any classes from <a href="http://www.luonline.com">online Christian colleges</a> while they're still in high school. I've been doing a little of that myself and it's actually been helping a lot with my regular schooling.