Innovation awards presented at MAATS

ORLANDO, Fla. – Ten marine aftermarket products were awarded recognition for innovative achievement by the National Marine Manufacturers Association and Boating Writers International at the ninth annual Marine Aftermarket Accessories Trade Show in Orlando this week.

The winning companies received their awards during the MAATS Awards Reception, held July 15 at the Orange County Convention Center.

The 2009 Innovation Award winners were:

Category: Aftermarket Electronics
Winner: Navionics Mobile 2.0 by Navionics – Chart plotter software for iPhone that brings information to consumers at a price starting as low as $5.

Category: Electrical Systems & Equipment
Winner: Rule Charge N’ Flow Portable Pump Kit by ITT – A small pump for washdowns, emergency uses and diesel fuel transfers.

Category: Boat Care, Coatings, Chemicals & Maintenance Tools
Winner: Dual Action Polisher by Shurhold – A random orbital polisher that gets a professional finish without damage or swirling.
Honorable Mention: Spider Away by Starbrite – A product that keeps spiders at bay.

Category: Deck Equipment
Winner: Smarte Jack by Smarte Jack Inc. – A product that makes deploying and retrieving a boat lift a one-person operation.

Category: Interior Parts & Equipment
Winner: PulseCode Lock by MasterLock Company – An access management technology designed to retrofit all Euro Profile cylinder-lock applications that uses an encrypted code and requires no wiring.
Honorable Mention: Supersub Smart 650 by Whale Water Systems – A low-profile automatic bilge pump.

Category: Personal Gear & Soft Goods
Winner: Nanuk by Plasticase, Inc. – A hard shell, waterproof case with a number of design features to protect delicate equipment in the harshest of environments.

Category: Safety Products
Winner: FastFind 210 Personal Locator Beacon by McMurdo – A PLB the size of a cell phone that has a 50 channel GPS and an integrated strobe.
Honorable Mention: AquaFlare by AquaFlare, an automatically deployed signaling device for skiers, wakeboarders and kids in the water.

Category: Trailers, Trailer Parts and Accessories
Winner: Safety 800 Trailer Tongue Weight Jack by Unified Marine, Inc. – A jack that takes the guesswork out of determining tongue weight to maximize stable trailering.

Category: Propulsion Parts & Propellers
Winner: P3 Palm Pump Fuel Primer by BluSkies International – An ergonomic and imaginative solution to replace the traditional rubber squeeze bulb.
Honorable Mention: Cruise 4.0 R by Torqeedo Inc. – The electric equivalent of a 9.9 HP outboard.

Category: Environmental Award
Winner: Kill the Spill Boat Wash by Enviromonde Network – A product that dissolves oil and stains quickly by breaking down hydrocarbons.

The Innovation Awards, organized by NMMA and judged by BWI, recognize products that best meet the following criteria:

  • Innovative distinction from other products currently being manufactured
  • Benefit to the marine industry and/or consumer
  • Practicality and cost-effectiveness
  • Availability to the consumer within 60 days of the show’s conclusion.
  • This year’s Innovation Awards were judged by a seven-judge panel that includes:

  • Panel Chairwoman Zuzana Prochazka, technical editor for Latitudes & Attitudes magazine, contributing editor to Mad Mariner and Circumnavigator magazines;
  • Alan Jones, executive editor of Boating World magazine;
  • Alan Wendt, editor, Marine CEO magazine;
  • David Seidman, editor at large, Boating magazine;
  • Robert Buller, equipment editor Pacific Yachting magazine;
  • Frank Lanier, surveyor and contributing editor to Southern Boating, Practical Sailor and Australian Yachting magazines;
  • Ben Ellison, senior electronics editor for Bonnier Marine Group and editor of Panbo Marine Electronics blog.
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