Thursday, April 9, 2009

Lankan inventors shine in Geneva

Sri Lanka won the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) Award, the International Press Prize, three Gold medals, one Silver medal and two Bronze medals for the seven inventions the country presented at the 37th International Exhibition of Inventions, Techniques and Products of Geneva at Geneva Palexpo (Hall 7) in Switzerland from April 1 to 5.

Two of the four most prestigious special awards of the inventors’ exhibition were won by two Sri Lankan inventors. Dammika Sujith from Chilaw was awarded the WIPO Award (the only cash price awarded at this competition) for his coir fibre extracting machine and Chandrasena from Mawathagama, Kurunegala, whose head and mouth operated computer mouse attracted a lot of media coverage, received the International Press Prize.

Winning two of the four special awards by one country is rare at this exhibition and this is the first time Sri Lanka has been honoured with such recognition.

This exhibition, which was held under the patronage of the Swiss Confederation, is considered to be the world’s largest market place for inventions. It hosts annually about 750 exhibitors from around 45 countries and displays about 1,000 new exhibits.

During this event, industrial and commercial companies, inventors, researchers, associations, private and State agencies and institutes present their inventions, the result of their research and their new products.

Sri Lanka has been participating in this prestigious event held in Switzerland since 1994 with last year’s three Sri Lankan inventors also winning awards including the Genius Award, a special prize awarded by the Hungarian Inventors Association. This year, seven Sri Lankan inventors presented their inventions at the exhibition:

Coir fibre extracting machine by Dammika Sujith of Chilaw won the Prize of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and Merit Gold with special commendation by the Judges.

Head and mouth operated computer mouse for the disabled by M.A. Prince Chandrasena of Mawathagama, Kurunegala won the International Press Prize and Merit Gold with special commendation by the Judges. Low cost drying system for food and agro products by Kapila Weeratunga Arachchi of Heerassagala, Kandy won the Merit Gold with special commendation by the Judges

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