Editor’s note: Nearly 240 inventors and companies from across the world exhibited at this year’s INPEX trade show outside Pittsburgh. Here’s a snapshot of what was on display:

Emblem Alive

Put some bling and zing on your car’s grilmustang grill frontl with Emblem Alive. Get your Mustang or any other emblem to pop in and out to a soundtrack, the click of a key fob or a slam of a door. Start-up company Jepp Industries uses its patent-pending precision actuators to trigger emblem movements and customized sounds played through a high-fidelity speaker system.

The company won a bronze medal in the engineering category at INPEX. At its booth, Emblem Alive demonstrated its technology using a Chevy logo that pulsated to the automaker’s famous “heartbeat of America” slogan.

Visit www.emblemalive.com



Glenn Pickering and sister Sherrie Sinclair just say “no” to lazy, especially when it comes to ladder safety. They’ve invented the RunGuard, a sort of locker sleeve that wraps around extension ladders and forms a six-foot safety barrier.

The device is designed to prevent accidents – and any resulting lawsuits.

Contact Glenn and Sherrie at sinclairent1@aol.com

Shark Pack


Bill Rigopoulos tells the story of when he was vacationing in the Bahamas and was afraid to leave his cash, cell phone, credit cards and passport in his hotel room or hide them under his towel while he hit the beach.

So he invented the Shark Pack – a way to keep his valuables with him safe and sound as he swam with the fishes.

The buoyant pouches are made of durable 0.42mm soft matte PVC. When sealed they are submersible up to 19 feet and can keep your cell phones and other goods dry underwater for up to three hours.

Visit www.sharkpack.com

Free Bird


Dennis Charles is the incorrigible inventor of Free Bird, a robotic dirigible. No, he didn’t derive inspiration from Falcon “Balloon Boy” Heene and his parents’ hair-brain publicity stunt. Free Bird is a radio-controlled helium-filled Mylar balloon that looks and (sorta) flies like a flying saucer. It’s designed for recreation or advertising.

Charles couldn’t bring his four and a half foot diameter prototype with him to the INPEX show, so he displayed a scale model. In any case, show officials prohibited him from flying Free Bird at the indoor venue.

He founded Gravity Control Systems to “help usher in ideas that will help change the world through the use of science principles that already exist in nature.” He brings to the table his experiences as an Air-Force mechanic, an utralight pilot and owner of a book store, a restaurant and a carpet-cleaning business.

Visit www.gravitycontrolsystems.com

For more information on INPEX, visit www.inpex.com