National Superhero Day is celebrated annually in the U.S. on April 28, and has been observed since 1995. Superheroes capture our collective imagination with their ability to transcend everyday limitations, and do what normal humans can’t do on their own. Behind every patent is a similar drive to do something important and novel, and to push the boundaries of what is humanly capable. (To visit our first edition of Superhero Patents, click here)
This week’s Top 5 lists a few patents which even Iron Man might tip his helmet to, and Hulk might want to use:
1) Exosuit System
Every superhero needs a costume, so unless you’re born with super powers, you may need to rely a bit on your gear (looking at you Tony Stark). This patent embodies an exosuit system that, “[i]n some examples, the flexible exosuit can be configured to augment the physical strength or endurance of the wearer,” and, in some embodiments, the actuators mimic, and are modeled after, actual muscles.
2.) Method and devices for combining muscle activity sensor signals and inertial sensor signals for gesture-based control
While this patent’s title may be a mouthful, it’s a roundabout way of getting to what is actually a gesture activated remote control, and in this version, it’s even wireless. If you’ve ever wanted to feel like a telepath or a wizard, controlling objects and devices with the mere wave of your hand, this patent is for you.
3.) Jumping Device
With this patent , you can jump higher than ever before (see this video of a similar device being used). If you can find some way to incorporate these into your superhero costume, you might even be on even footing should you run into this guy.
4.) Personal Propulsion Device
If you’re planning on becoming a superhero, this patent probably won’t do you much good, unless you’re this guy’s sidekick. A recent mainstay for beachside thrill-seekers, this water-fueled jet-pack promises to give you a taste of what it’s like to zip around like the Rocketeer.
5.) Wearable/Portable Device and Application Software for Alerting People When the Human Sound Reaches a Preset Threshold
While Hulk might not have a lot of patience for the length of this patent’s title, claim 11 mentions that this wearable device will alert the wearer when noise levels reach a threshold for “an anger or stress management purpose”. If anyone is planning a birthday gift for Mr. Banner this year, you might want to keep something similar in mind.