Lino Marrero, a Frisco sixth grade student, was recently honored for his ingenuity at the 4th Annual Invention Convention U.S. Nationals after creating wearable tech that can capture energy generated by walking.
Marrero’s invention, "The Kinetic Kickz," earned him two lucrative prizes, the Energy Industry Innovation Award and Best Display Board.
"The Kinetic Kickz is an energy harvesting technology that you can insert in your shoe and it collects your wasted energy from walking," Marrero said. "It taps into the world of human kinetic energy as a clean, renewable, alternative energy source."
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The sixth grader said his invention is a step in the right direction to solving the energy crisis. As you step down in the shoe, Morrero said the piezoelectric elements generate voltage, and a diode bridge rectifies the output from AC to DC. That energy is then stored in a capacitor, which can later be used to charge a device.
Marrero was among more than 500 award-winning K-12 inventors from across the nation, and around the world, who gathered inside the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation in Dearborn, Michigan on May 29-31 to compete for top awards in youth invention.
The students earned the opportunity to advance to the invitation-only event by winning their local competition held earlier this year. Invention Convention helps to instill problem-identification, problem-solving, entrepreneurship and creativity skills for life to inspire young people to become innovators, inventors and entrepreneurs over the course of their K-12 careers.
"The Invention Convention inspires and nurtures the next generation of scientists and engineers that will build the future," said Jason Chua, executive director of advanced projects at United Technologies. "We need more brilliant young minds like Lino to become the innovators of tomorrow and find solutions to our world's greatest challenges."
More than 120,000 students from across 23 states and representing four countries, competed for a chance to participate in the national event this year.
This was not Marrero’s first invitation. According to the Ridgefield Press, in 2017 he showcased the "String Ring," a ring to protect a string musician's sore and blistered fingers.
Last year he invented the "Sole Solution," an adaptable soccer shoe with swappable soles that zip on for different playing surfaces.
To learn more about the Invention Convention Worldwide locally, go to www.inventionconvention.org/local-programs.