Journeys of Innovation

Each month, our Journeys of Innovation series tells the stories of inventors or entrepreneurs whose groundbreaking innovations have made a positive difference in the world. 

Browse all stories below, or search for a name or story title.

Sangeeta Bhatia is pictured in front of a shelf filled with bottles and other lab equipment.
This Month's Journey of Innovation
Sangeeta Bhatia
Inventor and entrepreneur Sangeeta Bhatia combines engineering, medicine, and biology to study, diagnose, and treat disease.
Full Story
Portrait of Hinda Miller, Polly Smith, and Lisa Lindahl.
Hinda Miller, Polly Smith, and Lisa Lindahl
Designed to decrease discomfort for female runners, the sports bra has become an athletic necessity as well as a modern fashion staple. Full Story >
A man in a white coat works with equipment in a laboratory.
Percy Julian
A scientist makes inroads in chemistry and civil rights. Full Story >
Martine Rothblatt(excitedly jumping)  and the team from Tier one engineering proudly celebrating in front red Electric helicopter that, with the word lung written on it, huge smile, that just set  Guinesss World Record  being awarded plaque
Martine Rothblatt
How inventor and entrepreneur Martine Rothblatt learned to push past the idea of the impossible. Full Story >
Three men stand in front of a biplane. The man in the middle wears a parachute.
Floyd Smith
How inventor and entrepreneur Floyd Smith made the skies safer for aviators. Full Story >
 Jackie Quinn examines a piece of equipment on the ground with four team members working in the background
Jackie Quinn
NASA environmental engineer Jackie Quinn and her team created an emulsion system that removes contaminants from our groundwater. Full Story >
Susann Keohane and co-worker at the IBM aging in place environment/lab with the friendly looking Multi-Purpose Eldercare Robot Assistant (IBM MERA), a first of a kind Watson-enabled application designed to aid the elderly and assist caregivers with real-time information about their health.
Susann Keohane
How an IBM Master Inventor found her special gift in the world. Full Story >
Shawn Springs holds two helmets and poses in front of a wall of helmets.
Shawn Springs
Former NFL cornerback Shawn Springs tackles a new venture: impact protection. Full Story >
A left hand rests on a tabulation machine, and a right hand picks up a card.
Herman Hollerith
How a statistician's competitive spirit laid the groundwork for the modern census. Full Story >
Jim West in a laboratory with three of his graduate students.
Jim West
Highly regarded as an acoustic scientist, inventor Jim West is also a devoted mentor and advocate of diversity in STEM. Full Story >
Bob Metcalfe holding an Ethernet cable
Bob Metcalfe
The one wire that connected us all. Full Story >
Rory Cooper  in leaned back in a racing chair on a red track, leaned down to become aerodynamic, pushing himself to win
Rory Cooper
An accident changed Rory Cooper’s life and set him on a path to improving the well-being of people with mobility impairments. Full Story >
Image: 1950s KitchenAid illustrated advertisement of a housewife and husband excitedly admiring their new dishwasher. I the top right, dishes magically float from a hospital and industrial dishwasher into their household dishwasher.
Josephine Cochran
How Josephine Cochran defied social norms and invented the modern dishwasher. Full Story >
Portrait of Temple Grandin
Temple Grandin
A trip to the farm changed Temple Grandin's life forever. Full Story >
Image: The Black and Decker cordless Lunar Drill operated by an astronaut on a simulated surface of moon
Carroll Gantz
How NASA's moon missions and a patented design led to a popular hand-held vacuum cleaner. Full Story >
Young founders of Agrospheres sitting casually on a couch
Payam Pourtaheri and Ameer Shakleel
For a young startup, the seeds of risk and reward were planted long ago. Full Story >
Image: Helmeted U.S. soldiers look out over the prow of a Higgens boat as it navigates crashing waves towards the beaches of Normandy on D-Day.
Andrew Higgins
How a New Orleans inventor helped defeat the Nazis. Full Story >
Image: Port City® Brewing Company founders Bill and Karen Butcher in the brewery’s taproom hold six packs of some of their registered trademark beers, including, from left, Optimal® Wit, Metro Red®, Monumental® IPA, and Integral® IPA.
Bill and Karen Butcher
In a crowded marketplace, intellectual property helps customers discover new tastes. Full Story >
Image: Chemist Frances Arnold holds a beaker with yellow liquid up to the light.
Frances Arnold
Insights from the first American woman to win the Nobel prize in chemistry. Full Story >
Image: Johnson plays around with a Super Soaker® while wearing a shirt patterned with images of his famous creation.
Lonnie Johnson
How eight years of hard work led to the 'overnight success' of the Super Soaker®. Full Story >
Image: Irina Buhimschi and Cherry Murray speak on a panel at the US Capitol on empowering women
Irina Buhimschi and Cherry Murray
Two trailblazing innovators share insights on science, life in the lab, and beyond. Full Story >
Image: Crops being irrigated in the California Imperial Valley, circa 1919.
Harriet Strong
How one woman’s fortitude shaped agriculture and brought water to the American West. Full Story >
Image: Student studying at night using solar lights
Steve Katsaros
For the 1.2 billion people without electricity, one bright idea could change everything. Full Story >