Touch Bionics executive receives Scottish engineering honour

10 October 2013

The Chief Technical Officer of prosthetics developer Touch Bionics has been inducted into the Scottish Engineering Hall of Fame. Hugh Gill takes his place alongside Scottish engineering pioneers such as James Watt and Thomas Telford.

Gill was inducted for his work on the company's advanced multi-articulating bionic hand, the i-limb. His leadership has significantly advanced the company and its i-limb hand product originally conceived by founder David Gow.

In more recent years, Gill also pioneered the development of i-limb digits as the world’s first bionic partial hand solution designed for patients with missing fingers. The global population that can benefit from i-limb digits is approximately 1.2 million worldwide and, before the product was first introduced in 2009, people with missing fingers had no powered prosthetic available to them.

“We are thrilled that Hugh has received such a prestigious honour,” said Ian Stevens, CEO, Touch Bionics. “This recognition is a well-deserved acknowledgement of Hugh’s hard work and incredible engineering skill. The bionic hand and finger prostheses that Hugh and his skilled team have worked on have empowered thousands of patients with a dexterous powered solution to support their return to function and independence.”

Gill has over 39 years of experience in high technology companies, working in product design and manufacturing. He has supported a significant number of high-growth companies, taking their technology from concept into development, supply chain and manufacturing. Gill graduated at Strathclyde University with a BSc with Honours in Mechanical Engineering. With 12 product patents and design diversification of tunnelling machines, shipyard bending machines, wind turbines, printers, cameras, banking machines, human tissue drug tests, and industrial cleaning machines, Gill has solidified his innovative genius, and continues to change the world for the better.

"One needs the courage to lead significant changes in prosthetics and to overcome barriers to success,” said Hugh Gill. “The journey in Touch Bionics has been exhilarating and the future innovations will help to transform the lives of more patients.”

"These new inductees add to the phenomenal story of Scottish engineering's contribution to our civilisation,” said Gordon Masterton, Chairman of Judges for the Hall of Fame. “They demonstrate the special affinity that Scots have had for engineering and education, and they add diversity to the eleven already inducted. Hugh Gill’s election demonstrates that this affinity is alive and well and engineers are continuing to apply their ingenuity to create wealth for Scotland and the UK.”

photo of a person wearing i-limb digits cutting carrotsPhoto of a person wearing an i-limb tying shoelaces

The Hall of Fame was introduced by The Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders in Scotland (IESIS), and is endorsed by Scottish Engineering, the support group for the engineering industry in Scotland. There are currently fifteen members of the Hall of Fame who “tell a story of 250 years of world-beating engineering innovation that has led to massive improvements in our quality of life and to the United Kingdom’s economy.”


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