Daydreaming during class paid off for UW-Madison student Eric Ronning.
He won $11,250 on Friday at UW-Madison’s annual Innovation Days for an invention he came up with during an engineering lecture.
“I space out a lot,” Ronning admitted, a sophomore from Lincolnwood, Ill., who is majoring in mechanical engineering.
His invention, called the Manu Print, is an inexpensive prosthetic hand for amputees in developing countries. He said the prototype he created used only $20 of material. Other prosthetic hands on the market cost more than $1,000.
More than $27,000 in prizes are awarded at Innovation Days, which is in its 18th year and rewards students for creative, patentable inventions. Past winners include Matt Younkle, whose TurboTap is now used to pour beer in stadiums across the country.
Students, either individually or in teams, entered 14 inventions this year.
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