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2022 James Dyson Award Global Winners announced


  • SmartHEAL, A smart sensor for dressings which indicates how well a wound is healing by measuring its pH level, invented by students from Warsaw University of Technology, Poland
  • Polyformer, A machine that recycles plastic bottles into affordable 3D printer filament for developing nations, invented by students from McMaster University, Canada
  • Ivvy, A wearable replacement for the existing intravenous drip pole apparatus, improving comfort and mobility for patients, invented by Charlotte Blancke from the University of Antwerp, Belgium

MUMBAI, India, Nov. 16, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The James Dyson Award has given more than £1m in prize money to over 300 promising inventions from young engineers and scientists around the world. This year, Sir James Dyson has selected two global winners, each receiving £30,000, and one runner-up, receiving £5,000 in prize money, to support the next stages of their inventions.

Commenting on this year’s competition, Sir James Dyson said, “Every year, the James Dyson Award offers proof that young people are passionate about improving the planet and solving environmental and medical problems. There are people who grandstand over the issues they care about, but these young inventors are doing something more productive. They are diligently applying themselves to problem-solving using engineering, science and ingenious design.” 

The winning inventions

International winner – SmartHEAL, invented by Tomasz Raczyński, Dominik Baraniecki and Piotr Walter

The problem

When covered by a dressing, it is very hard to know how well a wound is healing. The most common mistake in wound healing is changing the dressing too often, which can lead to infections and tissue disruption.1

Current methods of assessing a wound rely on subjective scoring of colour, smell, temperature – or expensive laboratory biochemical tests.2 Poor wound healing not only leads to tissue inflammation, but also necrosis (death of body tissue that is irreversible), and can lead to severe illness or death.

The solution

SmartHEAL is a precise, affordable and scalable smart pH sensor for dressings. By using Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) communication systems and monitoring the pH of a wound, SmartHEAL can assess the wound’s condition and detect infection without removing the dressing, and therefore without disrupting the tissue.3 Medical professionals can subsequently analyse the data and prescribe the appropriate treatment for the wound. Smart bandages create and preserve a balanced wound environment.4

“We’ve all nervously peeled back a dressing or plaster to see what is happening underneath. SmartHEAL, a smart dressing, has won the International James Dyson Award because it provides doctors and patients with a key piece of data – the pH level – that can tell them how a wound is healing. This can improve treatment and prevent infection, saving lives. I hope the Award will give the team impetus to proceed down the tricky path towards commercialisation.” – Sir James Dyson, Founder and Chief Engineer at Dyson.

Next steps

The team will finish testing and then start clinical trials. Their aim is to then finish the certification process in three years’ time so they can start to distribute and sell SmartHEAL dressings in 2025.

On winning the James Dyson Award International prize, the SmartHEAL team said, “We are super excited to be the International Winners of the James Dyson Award this year. This is and will be a great opportunity for us to become a part of something bigger, something that hopefully can change the world. We strive to refine our prototype, obtain a patent and pass the necessary clinical trials to commercialise SmartHEAL. We were honoured to be greeted by Sir James Dyson himself. His words: Congratulations! You are the International winners of the James Dyson Award still ring in our ears – we’re still in disbelief, joy and happiness.

Sustainability winner – Polyformer, invented by Swaleh Owais and Reiten Cheng

The problem

While working at a makerspace in Rwanda, Swaleh and Reiten learned that many locals could not use the makerspace’s 3D printers, due to the high price of importing filament to the country.5 They also observed the lack of infrastructure to recycle plastic bottles in Rwanda.

The solution

Polyformer is a low-cost machine that turns plastic bottles into 3D printer filament. Polyformer cuts plastic bottles into long strips that are fed into an extruder. The strip is then thermoformed into 1.75mm filament, as it goes through a nozzle. The filament is passed through vents to cool the plastic before it is wrapped around a spool, ready to be inserted into a 3D printer.

The invention is targeted at developing nations due to the high price of importing 3D printer filament. With Polyformer, makers have easier access to cheap, high-quality 3D printer filament. This encourages usage of design infrastructure and career consideration in developing nations, while empowering makers to recycle their own waste and use the output productively. 6

“By turning used plastic bottles into 3D printer filament, Polyformer helps reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and provides a cheap and plentiful material for engineers and designers, especially in developing countries. Their idea will provide new opportunities for other inventors to prototype their ideas using 3D printing.” – Sir James Dyson, Founder and Chief Engineer at Dyson. 

Currently, Swaleh and Reiten are building new Polyformers to deploy at their partner makerspaces in Rwanda and they are designing new inventions within the Polyformer project, such as the Polyjoiner, Polydryer, Polyspooler, and many more.

After speaking to Sir James Dyson, Swaleh and Reiten said, “It is a great honor to be the James Dyson Award 2022 Sustainability winner. We are using the prize money to deploy several Polyformers and Polyformer-Lites at our partner makerspaces in Rwanda. With these machines, local students, designers, and makers in Rwanda will have access to low-cost 3D printer filament. This means they can use their community’s 3D printers more frequently. If you would like to build your own Polyformer, please check out our Discord.








The James Dyson Award forms part of a wider commitment by Sir James Dyson, to demonstrate the power of engineers to change the world. The competition has supported over 300 inventions with prize money, and is run by the James Dyson Foundation, an engineering-education charity funded by Dyson profits.

The Dyson Institute of Engineering and Technology and the Foundation’s work encourage aspiring engineers and problem solvers, to apply their knowledge and discover new ways to improve lives through technology. To date, James and the James Dyson Foundation have contributed over £140m to boundary-breaking concepts in education and other charitable causes.

This includes £12m to Imperial College London to create the Dyson School of Design Engineering, and £8m to Cambridge University to create the Dyson Centre for Engineering Design and the James Dyson Building.

At school level, the James Dyson Foundation offers robotics workshops, led by Dyson engineers, and provides free educational resources. These include its most recent launch, Engineering Solutions: Air Pollution: introducing young people to air pollution and engineering’s role in finding solutions.

The Foundation also supports medical research and the local community in Malmesbury where Dyson’s UK offices are based. Last summer, the Dyson Cancer Centre at Royal United Hospitals in Bath broke ground, and the Foundation continues to support the Race Against Dementia Dyson Fellow, Dr Claire Durrant, in accelerating finding better treatments for Alzheimer’s disease.

The Foundation has a website, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.


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