Interview with designer Wenkai Xue (WX), regarding views on design, and for the award-winning design A-Circle Life Buoy.

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Interview with Wenkai Xue at Friday 22nd of April 2016: DI: What is the main principle, idea and inspiration behind your design?
WX : When there is a shipwreck that people have to abandon the ship to escape, the cold water is the No. 1 killer for death of. Therefore, to maintain body temperature is the primary is the principal issue. Hurry and panic escape may also result in accidental bodily injury and the wound of blood will lead to shark attack, which endangers the lives of the drowning people. However, the traditional life buoy cannot solve the problems above.

DI: What has been your main focus in designing this work? Especially what did you want to achieve?
WX : The life buoy could be used in the shortest time. The ring body is specially designed to isolated seawater effectively, save people’s energy by supporting the body, and maintain body temperature so as to protect the safety of the drowning people to the maximized degree. The life buoy is equipped with GPS positioning and light emitting device, which can be found quickly and accurately by the rescure.

DI: What are your future plans for this award winning design?
WX : To turn the concept to reality product.

DI: How long did it take you to design this particular concept?
WX : It is a long time to do research on this concept. In the last one year, we kept deepening it.

DI: Why did you design this particular concept? Was this design commissioned or did you decide to pursuit an inspiration?
WX : From the report and news about marine perils, we realized how bad it did to human, which remind us to design a product to prevent life safety from marine perils happening without any requirement and commission.

DI: Is your design being produced or used by another company, or do you plan to sell or lease the production rights or do you intent to produce your work yourself?
WX : Our product is not produced by any company. And we are always looking for partner.

DI: What made you design this particular type of work?
WX : Once we realized how dangerous human would face and the threat to human’s life safety.

DI: Where there any other designs and/or designers that helped the influence the design of your work?
WX : No.

DI: Who is the target customer for his design?
WX : We design this product for corporation who runs maritime traffic.

DI: What sets this design apart from other similar or resembling concepts?
WX : We design for simply use and protect people well when suffering marine perils with GPS to lead a rapidly rescue.

DI: How did you come up with the name for this design? What does it mean?
WX : Because our product's shape is a circle and, as we all know, the angle of the circle is 360 degree and no sharp corner. It's just like our product can protect folks in fully preservation.

DI: Which design tools did you use when you were working on this project?
WX : We used some PC software as assist to accomplish and present out design.

DI: What is the most unique aspect of your design?
WX : It breaks design concept of ordinary buoy, to prevent humans from shark attack after abandon the ship when suffering marine perils, to maintain the body temperature, to arm the GPS to ensure rapidly rescue.

DI: Who did you collaborate with for this design? Did you work with people with technical / specialized skills?
WX : We have professional and technical person in our team.

DI: What is the role of technology in this particular design?
WX : Thin-film solar

DI: Is your design influenced by data or analytical research in any way? What kind of research did you conduct for making this design?
WX : Yes,it is. By the questionnaire survey.

DI: What are some of the challenges you faced during the design/realization of your concept?
WX : The challenge in designing the ring of life is focused on the tension and toughness of materials. After a number of tests in the selection of materials, we finally find the proper material which achieves the desired effect.

DI: How did you decide to submit your design to an international design competition?
WX : International Award and Competition affirmation for us to make our design much more persuasive. What’s more, it is a pretty promotional platform for us to take part in this competition.

DI: What did you learn or how did you improve yourself during the designing of this work?
WX : We learned how to express our design simply and straight, and focus on the detail.

DI: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
WX : I think that's all.