April 24, 2018
The European Patent Office (EPO) has named Frank Fish, biologist and professor of biology at West Chester University, and his research colleagues finalists for the 2018 European Inventor Award. Fish, Stephen W. Dewar, a Canadian entrepreneur/inventor/filmmaker, and Philip Watts, a US/Canadian aeronautical engineer, have challenged and changed the notion that rotating blades in turbines and fans should be straight and smooth. Based on the flippers of humpback whales, the research team has developed biomimetic turbine blades that can help wind farms produce up to twenty-percent more power with less wind. For their groundbreaking work, Fish, Dewar, and Watts have been nominated for the European Inventor Award 2018 in the category
Non-EPO countries. The winners of this year's edition of the EPO's annual innovation prize will be announced at a ceremony in Paris, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, on June 7, 2018.
Dewar's, Watts' and Fish's invention has the potential to make an impact on worldwide energy consumption, particularly as we increasingly rely on green technology, said EPO President Benoȋt Battistelli announcing the European Inventor Award 2018 finalists.
Their work shows how nature can serve as a source of inspiration and innovation, and how following this inspiration might lead to refreshing and unconventional technological advances.
The research team is among 15 finalists selected by an independent, international jury from a pool of more than 500 individuals and teams of inventors. This year, the finalists hail from Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, the U.K., and the U.S. The inventions cover a wide range of technological fields including biotechnology, microchip lithography, automotive, toys and games, medical imaging and technology, renewable energy, material sciences, lasers, and electronics.
Dr. Fish's innovative research is destined to have long-lasting global impact, said President of West Chester University Christopher Fiorentino.
His vast contributions to the field of science are recognized far and wide for solving problems, and making a considerable difference in a world that has a number of sustainable challenges. We continue to be quite proud of his pioneering work.
The European Inventor Award is one of Europe's most prestigious innovation prizes. Launched by the EPO in 2006, it honors individual inventors and teams of inventors whose inventions provide answers to some of the biggest challenges of our times. The finalists and winners are selected by an independent jury consisting of international experts from the fields of business, politics, science, academia, and research. Proposals are examined for their contribution to technical progress, social development, economic prosperity, and job creation in Europe.View the full release issued by the European Patent Office