Fusebox EPFL

Fusebox News

Keep an eye on this section for latest news, articles and inspiration to solve ongoing challenges. We have a team working behind the scenes to bring you exciting and relevant content.


Winners biomimicry

On December 9th, the winners of the Fusebox "Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature" were rewarded for their valuable and creative contributions! The jury's selection was:

1st prize: "Feeling like a crab", Rebecca Elyanow, intern at the Blue Brain Project

2nd prize: "La maison qui apprend à réduire ses dépenses énergétiques", Mélanie Hannebelle, Master student in Microtechnique

3rd prize: "Plumbing trees", Laura Piccinini, Master student in Environmental Engineering

The most active contributors were also awarded: Rebecca Elyanow, Mélanie Hannebelle and Mohsen Falahi.

Finally, the "Biomimicry@EPFL prize" was awarded to Samuel Spieser for the idea "Comment une voiture-fourmi éviterait les embouteillages".

Congratulations to the winners, and big thanks to all the participants, the experts and the jury that made this Fusebox challenge a success!

The moderators also thank Mediacom and the ENAC faculty for their support and funding.

Snail in the road, by Dave Huth

Only 4 days left to come up with a bright, funny, original idea about how to give Nature a say on tomorrow's innovations for a better world!

Rack your brains, glance at the patch of grass across the street or dwell upon the genius of some exotic species: Nature is everywhere - and opportunities for innovation too!

So waste no time, and have a look at Fast Company's articles on biomimicry: you had never imagined that a snail and a silk moth could inspire such smart and beautiful designs!

---> http://www.fastcompany.com/section/biomimicry


Picture "Snail on the road", by Dave Huth, Flickr.

Looking for inspiration or wondering about the far-reaching impact of biomimicry? Youtube will provide you with a wealth of inspirational talks, but we have picked up one for you, a TEDx talk by Jamie Miller from the University of Guelph, Ontario, where biomimicry is already blooming! Watch out for:

- the technological examples;

- the idea that Nature designs are free from patents and other intellectual property obstacles;

- the vision of biomimicry pioneers as "weeds" in a clear-cut forest that try and innovate to prepare the ground for a wider adoption of biomimicry in industry, research and society!

---> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHrO4t86phA



Last Monday, we had the pleasure to welcome certified biomimicry professionals Alessandro Bianciardi and Patrick Baumann for a lecture on biomimicry. Their inspirational talk introduced not only the concept of biomimicry but also the rigorous innovation process and the guidelines (the so-called "Life's principles") that empower innovators to design bio-inspired and sustainable solutions. They also presented several fascinating examples at all levels (shape, process, ecosystem) including some from their own work (how to make desalination more sustainable and how to harvest energy with a backpack). Part of their support can be found below.

The Biomimicry@EPFL team warmly thanks the speakers, the audience, Mediacom for the promotion of the event and ENAC for funding the friendly cocktail that enabled further discussion between the speakers and the students.

We hope that this lecture provided you with great inspiration for the Fusebox challenge!

Following a week of discussion between our experts and judges, and also taking into consideration your votes and comments, we are happy to announce the winners of the Solar Decathlon challenge:

1st Place: Maison 100% réutilisable by Nicolas Pierret

 Fusebox Solar Decathlon Challenge reusable house nicolas pierret

2nd Place: A house that keeps track of your environmental footprint by Bogdan Cîrlugea

Fusebox Solar Decathlon Challenge environmental footprint Bogdan Cirlugea

3rd place: Les energies renouvelables + stockage = UNE solution qui fonctionne by Madjid

Fusebox Solar Decathlon Challenge renewable energy madjid

Congratulations also to all our runners up in the top 12:

Cédric Liardet with hauteur d'étage optimisée

cap with Solar Steamer

Cédric Liardet with 3D printing solar design

Alicia with Holidays in the Solar House

Jean Hennebert with Une maison dans la maison

Alicia with Jugaad house

J-Frédéric Wagen with Traçabilité des déplacements des individus, optimisation logistique de la cité

Goyette Joelle with Du "car sharing" au "service sharing"

Nicolas Pierret with les entrailles d'une maison durable

Thanks to all of you who took part - and especially to our moderators, experts and jury and to the 3 institutions EIA-FR, EPFL and UNI-Fr. Hope to see you back soon for the next Fusebox challenge...watch this space!


And the Winners Are...

Posted by Leila Ojjeh (Admin) Jun 4, 2014

After great debating with the jury, we are happy to announce the winners of the "Nothing is lost... everything is transformed challenge":

1)   Gold Award (1000 CHF): “From Lead to Gold” by Alicia with the contribution of Nicolas Pierret.

illustration by Studio Banana 

2)   Silver Award (800 CHF): “Green Algae into Biodegradable Fertilizing Film” by Pierre Jacquet with the contribution of Alicia, cesco and Nicolas Pierret.

Illustration by Studio Banana

3)   Bronze Award (600 CHF): “Sustainable Street Food” by Alicia with the contribution of Alexandre Gubert, Cécile B. Qian Qian and Kristin Becker van Slooter.

Illustration by Studio Banana

4)   The Top 5 Leaderboard (600 CHF): Alicia, Nicolas Pierret, Alexandre Gubert, Cesco and Pierre Jacquet.

Yesterday, the authors and contributors of the Top 10 ideas took part in a convivial ceremony and sushi party at the Rolex Learning Center to celebrate the end of the challenge. After a foreword by Mrs. Corboud Fumagalli, Vice-President of Innovation and Technology Transfer at EPFL, and an introduction about Nitto by Mr. Moshizuki, Head of R&D, the jury and experts rewarded the winners with a hand written diploma in English and Japanese, their vouchers and a little Japanese gift.

Following the 3 weeks of intense online brainstorming, it was a great opportunity to meet in person, exchange and discuss future innovations and projects on environmental sustainability. 

With 81 ideas. 757 comments and 527 votes, this third Fusebox edition has been again a great success and we would like to thank Nitto, the community, the jury, the experts, the moderators and Unipoly for their engagement!

Let's meet again in September for new Fusebox adventures!

The selection has been tough! Discover the Top 10 ideas going to the next phase… You have 2 days to vote on these ideas and make them crispier to influence the final selection!

After 3 weeks of brainstorming the „Nothing is lost… everything is transformed“ idea generation phase is now closed! With 81 active participants, 81 great ideas and 674 comments, the harvest has been great… We have been amazed by the quality of the contributions and involvement of the community ! Thank you !

On June 3rd, the Jury will announce the Top 3 winning ideas. The top contributors and innovators will be invited to a ceremony to celebrate the end of the challenge and get rewarded! Stay tuned!

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La revue "Nature" annonce ce jeudi matin la mise au point, par des chercheurs, d'éthanol sans recours à des matières végétales. La fabrication de bioéthanol est actuellement décriée en raison de son impact environnemental et pour son influence sur le prix des matières premières.

Les biocarburants se veulent une alternative aux énergies fossiles. [Hajohoos - Fotolia]

Ce procédé est donc une véritable innovation. Ecoutez l' Interview de Suren Erkman, professeur d'écologie industrielle à l'université de Lausanne sur la RTS...

Quelles idées cela vous inspire pour le challenge "Rien ne se perd... tout se transforme...?"

Dear all,

Check out our latest picks! We have now close to 30 ideas tagged as interesting and some amazing conversations…! Well done!

But only 2 days left to think out of the box and bring fresh new ideas to the "Nothing is lost…everything is transformed challenge"! Could we get to 100 ideas? Brainstorm with your friends over the week-end and let your ideas fuse! So many unexplored potential waiting to be tapped into!

Make sure to vote to influence the Top 10 selection that will take place on Monday morning… and continue to build on the interesting ideas to make them crispier for adoption!

We’ll be back on Monday to announce the Top10...

Stay tuned and enjoy a great sunny weekend!

Your moderators

Blanche de Gramont & Leila Ojjeh


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BT took inspiration from the behaviour of ants when it redesigned its phone network. Photograph: Gail Shumway/Getty Images

Nature is a great teacher! We can learn a lot from all kinds of creatures (animals, insects...). This article on Bio-mimicry will certainly inspire your creativity with some great examples from billions of creators around us...

Click on this link to read this article!

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