Selection Date

  • 09/26/2020

Prize Objective

The Fish Protection Prize sought innovative solutions, designs, and strategies to protect fish from water infrastructure, such as water diversions, pipes, and intakes at hydropower dams.


Competitors proposed solutions for any fish species found in the United States that could be applied to river and irrigation canal diversions, unscreened diversion pipes for irrigation or municipal water supplies, cooling water intakes at power plants, or dam intakes. New ideas for addressing fish exclusion or improvements to existing technologies were also welcome.

While the prize solicited solutions of all shapes and sizes, organizers identified the following six topic areas as having the greatest potential for successful and cost-effective fish exclusion:

  • Sensory (e.g., acoustic and visual) deterrents 
  • Turbulence and velocity-based deterrents
  • Combination stimulus barriers
  • Diversion or intake layouts/geometry
  • Fish screen materials or coatings
  • Fish screen cleaning methods.

EERE Selections

Funding Awardees

  • First Place with $200,000 cash and $100,000 in voucher support: 
    • Alden Research Labs (Benjamin Mater [Principal Investigator], former Oak Ridge National Laboratory aquatic biologist and Charles Coutant [Co-principal Investigator): Deal With the Devil Fish: Biometric Screen
  • Second Place with $125,000 cash and $100,000 in voucher support:
    • Nicholas LaBry's team/Prometheus Innovations, LLC: Fish Diversion Materials and Inspection Improvement Coating
  • Third Place with $75,000 cash and $100,000 in voucher support:
    • Sterling Watson's team/Natel: The Center Sender