22 inventors announced by NIHF, will be honored in May

Landmark inventions that include ibuprofen, the hard hat and the sports bra were represented when the National Inventors Hall of Fame announced its 2020 inductees.

Twenty-two honorees were announced at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on January 7. In partnership with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, NIHF will honor them in Washington, D.C., May 6-7 at “The Greatest Celebration of American Innovation®.”

The Class of 2020:

  • R. Rox Anderson, laser dermatology: His treatments and procedures are now commonly used to remove birthmarks, scars and other skin lesions.
  • Sylvia Blankenship and Edward Sisler (posthumous), 1-MCP for fruit, vegetable and flower freshness: Their compound has become essential in preventing food waste, and increasing accessibility to fresh fruits, vegetables and cut flowers.
  • Dana Bookbinder, Ming-Jun Li and Pushkar Tandon, bend-iInsensitive optical fiber: Because ClearCurve® can bend without significant signal loss, it has reached locations previously inaccessible to optical fiber and advanced data transmission.
  • Lisa Lindahl, Hinda Miller and Polly Smith, sports bra: The revolutionary garment has enabled women’s participation in athletic activities and advanced their health and well-being.
  • James McEwen, automatic surgical tourniquet: Innovations in his first microprocessor-controlled automatic surgical tourniquet system  ensure safer outcomes in nearly 20,000 surgeries daily.
  • Mick Mountz, Peter Wurman and Raffaello D’Andrea, mobile robotic material handling for order fulfillment: The Kiva system uses mobile robots and control software to bring inventory shelves to workers.
  • Margaret Wu, synthetic lubricants: She revolutionized the way automotive and industrial lubricants are designed and synthesized.
  • James Abercrombie and Harry Cameron, blowout preventer  (posthumous): The world’s first reliable BOP successfully contains catastrophic blowouts from oil and natural gas wells.
  • Stewart Adams and John Nicholson, ibuprofen (posthumous): Ibuprofen is used worldwide to safely and effectively treat pain, fever and inflammation.
  • Evelyn Berezin, computer systems for business use (posthumous): She invented a computer reservations system for airlines and founded a company that developed the first computerized standalone word processor for business use.
  • Edward W. Bullard, hard hat (posthumous): The hard hat was the first commercially available industrial head protection device.
  • Floyd Smith, modern parachute (posthumous): His invention led to the creation of the parachute industry and provided safe landings across the world.
  • Frank Zybach, center-pivot Irrigation (posthumous): This  technology has revolutionized agricultural production throughout the world.

Details: invent.org