Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy

Energy Department Announces 2018 Collegiate Wind Competition Participants

April 11, 2017

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The Energy Department today announced the 12 collegiate teams selected to participate in the third Collegiate Wind Competition. This competition, led by the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory, challenges undergraduate students to design and build a model wind turbine based on market research and siting considerations, develop a business plan to market the products, and test the turbines against a set of rigorous performance criteria judged by a panel of wind industry leaders. Bringing together next-generation wind energy pioneers with today's industry leaders, the competition will take place during the annual American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) WINDPOWER Conference and Exhibition in Chicago, Illinois, from May 7–10, 2018.

The Collegiate Wind Competition combines expertise of students from a variety of engineering, business, communications, and social science programs, and challenges them to combine their individual skills to develop state-of-the-art wind energy solutions as a team. Intertwining academic coursework with tangible, hands-on learning, the Collegiate Wind Competition provides valuable real-world experience as students prepare to enter the workforce. Four new schools are competing, along with eight returning teams from either the 2014 and 2016 competitions. The 12 universities selected to participate in the Collegiate Wind Competition 2018 are:

  1. California State University Maritime Academy, Vallejo, California
  2. California State University, Chico, Chico, California
  3. Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa
  4. James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Virginia
  5. Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas
  6. Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona
  7. The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania
  8. Seattle University, Seattle, Washington
  9. Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas
  10. Universidad del Turabo, Gurabo, Puerto Rico
  11. University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin
  12. Virginia Tech University, Blacksburg, Virginia

Hailing from the state of Washington to Puerto Rico, each team brings its own diverse experience and unique perspective to the competition. The Energy Department held its second Collegiate Wind Competition in 2016 during the AWEA WINDPOWER Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans, Louisiana. Nearly 150 students from 12 institutions participated, with the Pennsylvania State University earning the highest cumulative score based on the performance of their turbine in wind tunnel tests, as well as the quality of their business plan and project pitch, to become the overall winner.

The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy accelerates development and deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and market-based solutions that strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality, and economic vitality. Learn more about the Collegiate Wind Competition by visiting the competition's official Web page.