A kettle that stores steam to help kids learn about cooking and energy in a hands-on fashion has won the 2015 Electrolux Design Lab in Finland. The competition attracted applications from industrial students located around the world, who were challenged to meet the brief of "Healthy Happy Kids." In response, participating students came up with designs generally based on sustainability and technologically-enhanced lifestyles.

The winning project was devised by Jordan Lee Martin (UK), who calls his concept "Bloom." He describes it as "the most efficient kettle in the world." His idea is to make children more aware of food preparation in a fun and practical way. Bloom recycles steam by capturing it in three separate pods. The children then can then use it to cook, purify the air and sterilize products through a custom app.

Bloom is fitted with a child-friendly safety device. It also has a lid to prevent any steam or hot water directly hitting a child. Instead, the steam is redirected through the vents for the pods.

"I like the way this concept tries to link the digital education/entertainment and the physical aspect of food preparation. In some cities people don’t go to farmers’ markets or farms to show their children how food is grown," says Lee Fain, Innovation Manager at Electrolux Design.

As the winner, Jordan won €10,000 (US$11,200) and six months of paid internship at the Electrolux Global Design Center.

Here’s a run-down of the other winning projects as well as the finalists that combine vision, ingenuity and a bit of kookiness for good measure.

  • Air Shield – This baby stroller came second and was designed for parents concerned with air pollution, as it filters and purifies air from the surrounding environment. Designed by Dominykas Budinas from Lithuania, it uses glass to protect the baby from atmospheric pollution, noise and UV rays. It features a microphone that allows parents to communicate with the infant without opening the glass. Dominikas says he was inspired by the option in some cars not to use the air from outside when needed. It received an award of €4,000 (US$4,530).
  • Q.H[Quadruple H - Health, Happiness, Hologram and Hula-hoop] - The third place winner was designed by Jeongbin Seo from South Korea. An air purifier, it was imaginatively designed as a hula hoop. It cleans the air through the hoop’s bottom side air inlet – there are 10 rubber air inlets in total. For further incentive, it also features a hologram function to generate images that can be projected from a wall-mounted wireless charging system. It also received €4,000 (US$4,530) as award.
  • Voris – The premise sounds like every parent’s dream: a robot that teaches kids the importance of taking care of their clothes. Designed by Martha Fabiola García Bustos (Mexico), it taps into children's imagination and their penchant for concocting imaginary creatures. The system is the techie incarnation of one of those creatures, but one that keeps those items that may not be dirty enough for the washing machine fresh and clean. It is designed as a spherical object on wheels and propelled by air. Ultraviolet light cleans the clothes while an air circulation system keeps clothes fresh and smelling good. The garments are delivered back on Voris' tongue-shaped tray.
  • Future Classroom – Tobias Tsamisis (Germany) created an educational concept based on sustainability and food production to help reconnect younger generations with food. The Future Classroom is a kitchen where students can grow fruits and vegetables by using an integrated aquaponic system. One part of it is a water pump that regulates the water circulation between the aquarium and the bed for the plants. The other part of the kitchen is the cooking area, which is equipped with a cooking stove and a sink that can be stowed away when not in use. An interactive touchscreen surface connects the two parts.
  • Plato – Rather than one design piece, Plato is a set of robotic solutions to stimulate creativity and make life easier for parents. Russian designer Mary Pilyugina says she was inspired by Platonic solids to conceive a range of robotic solutions, including a projector, a robot nanny, a bath tub/cradle and a UV sterilizer for bottles and pacifiers.

The People’s Award, given by online voters, went to Brazil’s Larissa Andrade, who conceived a two-part color and textile repair system. It employs a range of technologies such as scanning, photo and nano to perform its task. The idea is to repair any type of fabric and increase the longevity of clothes. Larissa received €2,000 for her win.

What do you think of the projects? Are they feasible concepts that can make it to market?

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