Meet the finalists
The European Inventor Award honours the individuals whose inventions impact our lives. Thanks to these pioneers, our world is becoming safer, smarter and more sustainable.
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Engineers Nuno Correia and Carla Gomes lead a team that has developed a mooring platform for floating solar farms that tracks the sun. Their system can increase photovoltaic panel efficiency, providing an incentive for further investment in floating solar farm technology.
To tackle widespread period poverty, Rafaella de Bona Gonçalves has developed biodegradable sanitary products for disadvantaged groups in her country using readily available harvest waste.
Together with their team, Madiha Derouazi and Elodie Belnoue have invented a platform to make therapeutic cancer vaccines that help the immune system recognise and destroy cancer cells in the body.
From an initial prototype that operated with trash from refuse containers and a second-hand treadmill, Victor Dewulf and Peter Hedley have developed an AI-driven waste recognition and sorting system that waste processing facilities can use to quickly and accurately sort waste, ensuring that more of it is recycled.
Materials scientists Nuria Espallargas and Fahmi Mubarok have pioneered a method of applying unmeltable ceramics as a protective coating through thermal spraying. Their world-first achievement opens the door to thinner, lighter and longer lasting industrial coatings.
A musician by training, Joachim Fiedler was inspired to make an easy-to-open fastener to unclip his cello bow with one hand. His magnetic-mechanical fasteners are now found in dozens of everyday products, from bike helmets to car seats.
Spanish professor Elena García has developed an adaptable robotic exoskeleton for children who use wheelchairs. The exoskeleton enables the children to walk during muscle rehabilitation therapy, improving their well-being and extending their life expectancy.
Researcher Claude Grison has developed a method of using plants to extract metal elements from polluted soil, and then uses these elements as "ecocatalysts" to make new molecules for the chemical, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries.
Engineers Frank Herre and Hans-Georg Fritz lead a team which has developed an automated car-painting system that applies paint without wasting a single drop, cutting waste and enabling new levels of customisation.
Hungarian biochemist Katalin Karikó developed a way to modify messenger ribonucleic acid for safe use in the human body, paving the way for its use in COVID‑19 and other vaccines, as well as prospective therapies for cancer and heart disease.
Estonian scientists Jaan Leis, Mati Arulepp and Anti Perkson have optimised a material called curved graphene that can be used as an electrode to deliver quick-charging, longer lasting and more powerful ultracapacitors for industry.
Johan Martens, Tom Bosserez and Jan Rongé have invented a solar panel that produces clean hydrogen gas from sunlight and ambient moisture, potentially providing an alternative source of green energy for buildings around the world.
Aeronautical engineer Frédérick Pasternak has invented a space-based weather forecasting instrument that will map out gases in the atmosphere in unprecedented detail and boost the reliability of climate change forecasts.
Chemist Donald Sadoway has developed a liquid metal battery for storing solar and wind energy. Comprised of locally sourced raw materials, his battery provides a cost-effective long-term storage solution.
Ido Sella and the late Shimrit Perkol-Finkel developed a new type of concrete to make marine infrastructure more habitable to native marine life, encouraging healthy ecosystems and reducing the environmental impact of marine construction.