If you are a committed athlete who uses protein powder to get the most from a workout, Will Collins '19, JP Nolan '19 and Brendan McEnroe '19 (pictured above) have a product for you. Meet P4 -- for 'powder pill performance pill' -- a protein powder dispenser designed to drop into a water bottle for an instant protein boost.
Protein is essential for muscle growth, and many athletes and gym enthusiasts drink protein shakes and protein-enhanced water to repair damaged muscles and tissues, and accelerate recovery from muscle soreness after exercise. Typically, protein powder comes in large 22 –ounce plastic canisters, fine for kitchen pantries, not so fine for gym bags. This Delbarton Incubator team sought a solution for a clean, convenient way to carry dry protein powder to the gym, then dissolve in a water bottle, post-workout. Check out the team's excellent product demo (they wisely used a colored drink mix for the full effect).
The team's first strategy was to engineer a special cap to house the powder, but the boys soon discovered a comparable design on the market that Collins says, "worked just fine." Undeterred, next they designed a slim, double-walled cylinder with a rotating function. The P4 container holds a pre-measured amount of protein powder. One quick twist of the base reveals round cut-outs that allow the powder to mix with any liquid into which the device is plunged. The P4 design also acts as a natural agitator to mix the protein powder, which tends to be gritty and settle to the bottom of a container if not well blended.
The team continued to tweak the P4 design, devising a key-like top that simplifies the rotation process. Plans are underway to add a small funnel for easy measuring and filling, and as the Incubator curriculum continues to unfold, the team will develop a marketing plan, launch a product website and add more social media platforms to promote P4 (they already have an Instagram site). Will they apply for a patent? "We're working on it," they report.
Teacher Dave Martin says of our nine 2019 Incubator teams, "This year's teams are working on some exciting ideas and continuing to improve their prototypes." We look forward to sharing more Incubator product-development news!