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Opportunities for University Students and Professors

Adult competitors can immerse themselves in competitions such as designing a more energy-efficient paper industry and constructing a solar-powered house.

Buildings

Better Buildings Case Competition
The annual Better Buildings Case Competition engages the next generation of engineers, entrepreneurs, and policymakers to develop creative solutions to real-world energy efficiency problems for businesses and other organizations across the marketplace. Through the competition, interdisciplinary teams of university students gain critical skills and experience to start careers in clean energy, while supporting the Obama Administration’s Better Buildings Initiative goal of reducing energy consumption by at least 20% by 2020 in commercial and industrial buildings across the United States.

Solar Decathlon
The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon is an award-winning program that challenges collegiate teams to design, build, and operate energy-efficient houses powered by the sun. These teams spend almost two years creating houses to compete in 10 contests. The winner of the competition is the team that best blends affordability, consumer appeal, and design excellence with optimal energy production and maximum efficiency. The next event will take place in Fall 2015 at the Orange County Great Park in Irvine, California.

General Energy and Environment

Energy Challenge
Teams of college engineering students design energy efficiency and waste-minimization concepts that have real applications in the pulp and paper industry.

Georgetown University Energy Prize
The Georgetown University Energy Prize (GUEP) is a multi-million dollar prize that challenges communities to reduce their energy usage per-capita. After a Letter-of-Intent period during which communities can participate in a review of the final competition rules, the competition will be conducted in four stages over a three year period starting in early 2014. Towns, cities and counties in the U.S. with a population between 5,000 and 250,000 are eligible to apply.

P3: People, Prosperity, and the Planet Student Design Competition for Sustainability
The Environmental Protection Agency's P3 – People, Prosperity, and the Planet—Program is a unique college competition for designing solutions for a sustainable future. P3 offers students quality hands-on experience that brings their classroom learning to life.

National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition is designed to build regional networks of student-focused business creation contests across the country.

Geothermal

2014 Geothermal Student Competition - GeoEnergy is Beautiful
The GeoEnergy Is Beautiful 2014 competition promotes geothermal energy as a key player in the nation's renewable energy mix. Student teams from leading colleges and universities and high school seniors are invited to create concepts for high-quality, high-impact infographics and outreach materials that combine accurate, technical information with clear, data-backed messages and aesthetic appeal. The competition will accept applications through April 5, 2014.

Hydrogen / Fuel Cells

Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Competitions for Students and Teachers
Check out these contests on hydrogen and fuel cells.

H2U Student Contests
This contest challenges university teams to develop and design a hydrogen application.

Solar

American Solar Challenge
To compete in the American Solar Challenge, university teams, companies, and clubs from around the world build solar-powered cars and race them across the country.

Technologies and Engineering

EcoCar Challenge
EcoCAR 2: Plugging In to the Future is a three-year collegiate engineering competition and the only program of its kind. The competition's mission is a vital one: offer an unparalleled hands-on, real-world experience to educate the next generation of automotive engineers. The competition challenges 15 universities across North America to reduce the environmental impact of a Chevrolet Malibu without compromising performance, safety and consumer acceptability.

The Doctor Bernard S. Baker Award for Fuel Cell Research
This award recognizes exceptional undergraduate and graduate students pursuing research in a fuel cell-related field.

Water

Open-WARP: Predicting Hydrodynamic Forces for Renewable Ocean Energy
The Open Wave Analysis and Response Program (Open-WARP) Challenge was developed by TopCoder, the world's largest platform for digital open innovation, along with the Center of Excellence for Collaborative Innovation and the U.S. Department of Energy. The Open-WARP Challenge asks TopCoder community members from around the world to develop software that can convert a common CAD model to a geometric mesh, which can be later used to solve inviscid Navier-Stokes equations.

Wind

The U.S. Department of Energy Collegiate Wind Competition challenges undergraduate college students from multiple disciplines to investigate innovative wind energy concepts; design, build, and test a wind turbine to perform according to set specifications; develop a business plan to market their turbine concept; and propose innovative solutions to current wind industry barriers. Visit the website for more information about how to participate in the next competition and to meet the 2014 champions.