The 25th $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize was bestowed in 2019. We have successfully identified and rewarded highly accomplished inventors who have collectively had a significant impact in the areas of health, technology, energy, manufacturing, research and other sectors for the past 25 years. The individuals recognized over the last 25 years reinforce the importance of invention today and what we hope for in the future. However, the landscape has changed significantly over the last 25 years with the proliferation of prize programs that celebrate and incentivize innovation.

The Lemelson Foundation and the Lemelson-MIT Program have made the decision to discontinue the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize as of 2019. Instead, together we will be redoubling our efforts to inspire youth to invent with purpose. We see that today’s youth are most inspired to invent by experiencing invention and seeing the impact of the inventions of near peers, such as the collegiate Lemelson-MIT Student Prize winners. The Lemelson Foundation and the Lemelson-MIT Program want to deepen the commitment in invention for K-12 and higher education, and expand the impactful work that is happening on college campuses and in K-12 schools across the U.S.

2019

Creates renewable energy technologies
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2018

inventor of reCAPTCHA, co-inventor of CAPTCHA and creator of a free language-learning platform, Duolingo.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2017

Pioneer of the revolutionary CRISPR technology and optogenetics
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2016

Inventor of Femto-photography
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2015

Inventor Creates First Mass-Produced Low-Cost, Eco-Friendly Battery; Awarded $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2014

Inventor Creates Tiny Technologies For Medicine; Awarded $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2013

Genetically engineers viruses to create new products.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2012

Commercialization of inventions Revolutionizing Human Health
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2011

Invented healthcare tools that can better integrate with the human body
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2010

Invented the world’s first bioorthogonal chemical reaction, a technology for labeling biomolecules in living cells or animals.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2009

Invented Dip-Pen Nanolithography and nanoparticle-based biodetection schemes
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2008

Invented PRINT® (Particle Replication in Non-wetting Templates) technology used to manufacture nanocarriers in medicine.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2007

Invented an amplified chemical sensor that uses molecular wires to detect the presence of vapors from explosives.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2006

Developed and improved modern liquid crystal technology
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2005

Created a sonar tool to isolate different movements inside the human body: Transcutaneous Doppler system
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2004

Invented the first practical LED (light emitting diode)
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2003

Invented some of modern molecular biology's core instruments, including the DNA Sequencer.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2002

Invented IBOT, a battery-powered wheelchair that can climb stairs and the Segway.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2001

Invented the first reading machine for the blind
Lemelson-MIT Prize

2000

Revolutionized surgical embolectomy procedures
Lemelson-MIT Prize

1999

Revolutionized the semiconductor industry with very-large-integrated circuits.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

1998

Langer's research into polymers led to the slow release of micro-encapsulated doses of ionic drugs, peptides and other large molecule drugs.
Lemelson-MIT Prize

1997

Invented the computer mouse
Lemelson-MIT Prize

1996

Opened the door to genetic engineering and laid the foundations for gene therapy and the biotechnology industry
Lemelson-MIT Prize

1995

Develped mathematical models for automotive computers
Lemelson-MIT Prize