The BoatUS Foundation, along with the Personal Floatation Device Manufacturers Association and the National Marine Manufacturers Association, have teamed up to seek out new technologies and design ideas with the Innovation in Life Jacket Design Competition. The competition opened in August.
A $10,000 cash award awaits the winning design. Deadline to submit ideas is April 15, 2015.
Entries that embrace new technologies and non-traditional thinking are encouraged. There are no rules regarding types of materials to be used or whether the design meets any current U.S. standards. Entries can be as simple as hand-drawn theoretical designs to working prototypes.
Individuals or groups, such as high-school science clubs, collegiate design programs or boat and fishing clubs are encouraged to submit entries, which will be judged based on four criteria: wearability, reliability, cost and innovation. “Wearability” relates to the level of comfort. “Reliability” will take into account the chances for potential failure, while “cost” will look at the affordability of the design. “Innovation” will take into account originality or the utilization of new technologies.
The BoatUS Foundation will post entries on its website and Facebook page for public voting. The winner will be announced at the September 2015 International Boat Builders Exhibition and Conference in Louisville, Ky. Additional cash prizes will be awarded to the second- and third-place entries.