A device invented in Clinton, NC by Frank Polifka.
The Windhexe was initially his attempt to make a portable machine to mill grain, as sought by a grain buyer. However, by the time Polifka was done with his project (it took him 15 years!), the buyer had moved on. He sent demonstration clips to friends and colleauges, more as an amusement of his new invention than searching for investors. But others got their hands on some of the clips and their imaginations were inspired.
So what is the Windhexe? Polifka received his patent for the device in Nov, 2002, it is essentially a Tornado in a can. Or at least that is how he explains it.
"Compressed air rushes into an eight-foot-tall steel cone and whirls counterclockwise at tremendous speeds, producing winds capable of turning rock into dust."
Many people from some pretty diverse industries
are taking a look into the new technology. From Gib DeBusk who is seeking to get collagen
-rich protein powders from the machine. Right now the process to get the powder (used in medicinal and cosmetic products) is difficult and expensive. After he fed the machine his "goo" made of jellyfish
and egg membrane
, it whirred up and dumped out a fine powder, which DeBusk estimates at a value of $2.50/kg
. The total time of the machine running was actually a shorter period than it took the engineer to load DeBusk's goo
into the machine. Which is a good thing since it costs an estimated $12 an hour in electricity
alone to run the machine.
Others looking into the device are people in the poultry industry, looking to get rid of (or perhaps put to use) chicken nuggets. Not the sort you would find at fast food restaurants, but head, feet, feathers, even blood. The Windhexe can remove all the water and pulverize the bits into a fine powder that can be either easily disposed of or put to other uses. Even the construction business has seen the potential of concrete re-usage. Take concrete, throw it in and out it comes in usable powder form.
As to whether or not "Frank Polifka" becomes a household name, has yet to be seen. He is too busy having fun with his new invention.