The Segway’s inventor has a new project : Manufacturing human organs

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Dean Kamen, who invented the Segway almost 20 years ago, is still busy inventing. Now, at the age of 69, he is working on the most ambitious project of his career: manufacturing organs

When the FDA approves lab-grown human organs for patients, Dean Kamen wants to be ready to mass-produce them

This past January, the umpteenth version of the Segway Personal Transporter whisked attendees around in its white, egg-shaped seat at CES, the huge annual consumer electronics show in Las Vegas. Called the Segway S-Pod, it drew comparisons to the hover-chairs in Wall-E that shuttled around people so out of shape and blob-like, they’d forgotten how to stand.

This is not how Dean Kamen, who invented the Segway almost 20 years ago, imagined his legacy.

Kamen was inspired to create a device like the Segway in the early ’90s, when he noticed a young man who’d lost his legs in a wheelchair at the mall. It seemed like everywhere Kamen went that night, he bumped into the guy, seeing him unable to get over a curb or reach a high shelf at Radio Shack, too low to be noticed in line at the ice cream counter. Kamen had already been thinking about how to help the disabled. “And I just decided, you know what?” he says. “I’m going to solve that problem.”

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Why Creative People Are Eccentric

Ibot Dean Kamen

Dean Kamen on his Ibot invention.

He is one of the world’s best known and most successful entrepreneurs, with hundreds of patents to his name—including the Segway scooter. But you will never see Dean Kamen in a suit and tie: the eccentric inventor dresses almost exclusively in denim. He spent five years in college before dropping out, does not take vacations and has never married. Kamen presides (along with his Ministers of Ice Cream, Brunch and Nepotism) over the Connecticut island kingdom of North Dumpling, which has “seceded” from the U.S. and dispenses its own currency in units of pi. Visitors are issued a visa form that includes spaces on which to note identifying marks on both their face and buttocks…

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Dean Kamen files patent application for an inflatable, illuminated wind turbine

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Another new invention from Dean Kamen.

Inflatable wind turbines may not be an entirely new idea, but prolific inventor Dean Kamen has detailed one of a slightly different sort in a recently published patent application. In addition to generating energy for general use, the turbine would also be able to power a set of LEDs adorning the turbine itself, which could be used to display advertising or other information using a persistence of vision effect…

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Dean Kamen Developing Amazing Eco Hybrid

Eco burner

Dean Kamen – the multimillionaire inventor behind the Segway personal transporter – is well down the road in the development of a new bike that combines electric power and a radical generator which will allow it to burn almost any fuel.

Built around a fairly conventional battery and electric motor combination to provide the drive to the wheel, something Kamen’s experience with the much-hyped Segway makes relatively easy, the radical part of the design is the inclusion of a Stirling engine to recharge the bike’s battery pack. Based on technology that pre-dates the internal combustion engine by nearly a century, the Stirling engine is closer in concept to a steam engine, using external combustion, and without the need for a fuel that can be injected and burned incredibly fast inside a normal engine’s combustion chamber, it can run on virtually anything that burns – opening the door to easily renewable fuels rather than relying on dwindling fossil fuel supplies…

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Dean Kamen Develops World’s First Stirling Hybrid Electric Car

 Dean Kamen Develops World’s First Stirling Hybrid Electric Car

The same day that Ford and General Motors announced catastrophic third-quarter losses, Dean Kamen was showing off his new electric car. The prototype vehicle, a zippy two-seat hatchback designed with more than a passing resemblance to the Volkswagen Beetle, can go about 60 miles on a single charge of its lithium battery and with practically zero emissions. The secret? “It’s the world’s first Stirling hybrid electric car,” says Kamen.

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Dean Kamen Invents the “Luke Arm”

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0_mLumx-6Y[/youtube]

Dean Kamen’s “Luke arm”—a prosthesis named for the remarkably lifelike prosthetic worn by Luke Skywalker in Star Wars—came to the end of its two-year funding last month. Its fate now rests in the hands of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which funded the project.

If DARPA gives the project the green light—and some greenbacks—the state-of-the-art bionic arm will go into clinical trials. If all goes well, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gives its approval, returning veterans could be wearing the new artificial limb by next year.

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Dean Kamen’s Miracle Water Distiller

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5FKtvxU7c0[/youtube]

Shown for the first time on video, Segway inventor Dean Kamen presented his Vapor Compression Distiller on last night’s Colbert Report. The distiller is a chemical-, membrane-, and filter-free water purifier. Kamen claims the box draws pure drinkable water from oceans, poisons—even a 50-gallon drum of urine.

 

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