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Winners Announced in Lubrizol Outdoor Product Design Contest at USU

Tuesday, May. 09, 2017

Utah State University students Ryan Anderson and Nathan Larsen took first place in the TPU DesignFEST challenge sponsored by the Lubrizol Corporation. Winners were selected from submissions from student teams in the Outdoor Product Design and Development (OPDD) program at Utah State University (USU).
USU’s OPDD program and Lubrizol collaborated to present real-world design challenges for students to solve. Students worked to find outdoor product applications for Lubrizol’s innovative TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) material over the course of a semester. Students competed for cash prizes as well as company and public recognition for their designs.

“We are excited to announce the winners of the initial TPU DesignFEST contest,” said Kenneth Kim, Lubrizol’s Global Sports and Recreation Market Development Manager. “TPU DesignFEST was a great opportunity to challenge students to envision and explore the exciting possibilities for TPU in the next generation of outdoor products, while competing for cash prizes and developing skills to enhance their education and future careers.”

Students developed their concepts as a part of the Design Thinking class taught by, OPDD assistant professor, Mark Lee Koven.

“Having a company like Lubrizol sponsor a design challenge, such as DesignFest, provides an invaluable and unique opportunity for our students,” Koven said. “It gives OPDD students direct access and experience with the industries that help shape their chosen profession. Lubrizol was especially generous with their time and resources, which allowed students to come away with both a better understanding of the material side of outdoor products, and also a wealth of experience in design development and presentation. Design challenges such as this one are key ingredients for the growth and preparation of our students for the industry.”

Lubrizol’s involvement in the OPDD program provides students industry experience that will better prepare them to work in the outdoor industry as well as provide students exposure to industry professionals. Student teams competed for cash prizes and public recognition by using TPU products at the core of their designs for demanding, high performance applications in footwear, apparel, sporting goods, outdoor equipment and accessories. 

The winning teams are:

First place - Ryan Anderson and Nathan Larsen -- padded sports gloves with enhanced cushioning and wear-resistant grip

Second place - Logan Reese and Tyler Stewardson -- skateboarding shoes with superior impact absorption and abrasion resistance

Third place - Russ Jones and Zach Wootton -- medical crutches with improved comfort, cushioning and grip

 About Outdoor Product Design and Development (OPDD)
The Outdoor Product Design and Development program at USU is based in Logan, Utah, and was created began in January 2016 in order to better prepare a workforce looking to work in the outdoor industry. Students in the OPDD program learn the principles of apparel design, design principles, materials and textiles, and 3D design courses as well in order to fit a growing demand for product designers with an emphasis on the outdoor industry.

About The Lubrizol Corporation
The Lubrizol Corporation, a Berkshire Hathaway company, is a technology-driven global company that combines complex, specialty chemicals to optimize the quality, performance and value of customers' products while reducing their environmental impact. It produces and supplies technologies to customers in the global transportation, industrial and consumer markets. These technologies include lubricant additives for engine oils, driveline and other transportation-related fluids, industrial lubricants, as well as additives for gasoline and diesel fuel. In addition, Lubrizol makes ingredients and additives for home care and personal care products and specialty materials encompassing polymer and coatings technologies, with polymer-based pharmaceutical and medical device solutions. Our products for the oilfield market include technologies for exploration, production and transportation.

Writer/Contact: Chase Anderson, 385-350-5503,

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