Unexpectedly Intriguing!
September 10, 2009

The winning design of the James Dyson Award for 2009 has been announced, and we're not kidding when we say that it's one of the neatest design concepts we've seen that also has exceptional practical value. Meet the Automist, a device that transforms the common kitchen sink into an extremely effective home fire suppression system (HT: Core77):

Illustration of the Automist at Work

Let's take you through each of the panels in the illustration above:

  1. The Automist is installed at the base of the faucet in a kitchen sink.

  2. A fire breaks out in the kitchen.

  3. Smoke sets off the kitchen smoke alarm.

  4. The smoke alarm sends a signal to the Automist water control valve.

  5. The valve opens, sending a torrent of cool water-mist from the base of the sink's faucet in all directions.

  6. The water-mist acts to suppress both the fire and its spread, protecting the home from significant fire damage.

Better still, here's the YouTube video for the contest entry:

The potential of the invention for reducing losses related to home fires is pretty remarkable. For their efforts, the contest winners Yusuf Muhammad and Paul Thomas of the Royal College of Art have won £10,000 to help develop their design further toward entry into the market.

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