If you think you've got a genius, problem-solving idea, you might want to share it with James Dyson. The man behind the Dyson brand, best known for their bladeless fans and vacuum cleaners, have officially launched this year's edition of the James Dyson Award.

Each year James and his team of engineers and scientists hunt for solutions to real world problems. The brief is simple: design something that solves a problem, big or small. The prize: £30,000 towards the winning project’s future development. 

Two international runners-up will receive £5,000 each, and national winners £2,000 each.

“There is normally a better solution to a problem. Engineers challenge convention and have brilliant ideas; The James Dyson Award looks for remarkable yet simple designs with the potential to have a huge impact on society. Each year I am amazed by the ideas and I look forward to seeing this year’s raft of entries” said Dyson.
 
Past winners have helped tackle the problem of over fishing, transportation of vaccines in the developing world, global food waste, and mortality rates of premature babies. Now in its 14th year, the award rewards those who elegantly solve a problem through intelligent engineering solutions. The best inventions are often the simplest.


 
Last year’s International Winner was EcoHelmet, a foldable bike helmet which uses a unique honeycomb paper configuration to protect the head from impact; folds flat when not in use and is made from 100% recyclable materials. With bike share programmes on the rise around the world, EcoHelmet’s lightweight and practical design makes it an attractive option for city cyclists, where road accidents are frequent and head injuries could be fatal. 
 
Isis Shiffer says: “The financial support and exposure from winning the James Dyson Award has allowed me to fully commercialise EcoHelmet. I am honoured to have had this extraordinary experience and I cannot wait to see my fully-fledged design roll off the production line this year.”
 
Last year’s UK national winner was Oneware; a series of modular units that aids in food preparation and dish washing for people with only hand to spare. Oneware consists of a main frame with modular units that include a chopping board and a silicone net for washing of dishes. The unit is designed to fit most standard size sinks so as to accommodate most users. 


 
Industrial Designer, Loren Lim said  “I wanted to invent something that would allow us to use objects with just one hand. Through the years, we have made life easier for people to operate things with just one hand. For instance driving an automated car. So I asked, why can’t we do the same for day to day products? Aside from convenience, Oneware aims to rethink how we can perform a task more intuitively.”

The competition opens 30 March 2017 and closes 20 July 2017.  Other dates to remember include:

– National winners and finalists announced: 7 September 2017 
– Dyson engineers’ shortlist: 28 September 2017
– International winner and finalists announced: 26 October 2017

Good luck!