EnergyTech University Prize

Sponsored by the Office of Technology Transitions (OTT) at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the EnergyTech University Prize (EnergyTech UP) is a collegiate competition challenging multidisciplinary student teams to develop and present a business plan that leverages lab-developed and other high-potential energy technologies. EnergyTech UP awards cash prizes to teams that successfully identify an energy technology, assess its market potential, and propose a strategy for commercialization.

Student teams compete for more than $250,000 in total cash prizes as they explore business opportunities for lab-developed or other high-potential energy technologies, assess commercialization opportunities through market analysis, and present a viable business plan to industry judges. Throughout the competition, they receive mentorship and materials to help them succeed.

The top teams compete for a share of $100,000 in prizes funded by OTT. In addition, six DOE Technology Offices offer up to $25,000 each in bonus prizes for the best teams in their respective fields. The six offices include: the Geothermal Technologies Office, Solar Energy Technologies Office, Office of Nuclear Energy, Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management, Building Technologies Office, and the Water Power Technologies Office.

    Understanding that energy is often inherently local, teams first present at their closest regional Explore Events in February 2022, where Regional Winners and Technology Bonus Prize Semifinalists are identified. These teams are provided exclusive mentorship and free access to OTT's Energy I-Corps curriculum to help students refine their ideas throughout February and March. Finally, the regional winners pitch their complete business plan at Carnegie Mellon University Energy Week in March 2022.

    The EnergyTech University Prize, in partnership with American-Made Challenges, is designed to be approachable, equitable, and scalable nationwide. ​Distinct from many startup competitions, winners are chosen based on the strength of their proposal, not the strength of their background. 

    National Winners and Technology Bonus Prize Finalists

    The following teams have been selected as National Winners and Technology Bonus Prize Finalists.

    TEAM SCHOOL(S) STATUS
    Mechanochemical Recycling of LCO Batteries Stanford University

    First-Place National Winner

    Self-Powered Autonomous Robot for Power Lines Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

    Second-Place National Winner

    Structural Piezoelectric Supercapacitors University of Miami

    Third-Place National Winner

    Future Heat The University of Utah

    Technology Bonus Prize Winner

    Pantheon The State University of New York at Binghamton

    Technology Bonus Prize Winner

    Mesophase Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    Technology Bonus Prize Winner

    Alpha Nur The University of Chicago and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

    Technology Bonus Prize Winner

    Solar Shepherds Appalachian State University

    Technology Bonus Prize Winner

    Electromaim The George Washington University and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

    Technology Bonus Prize Winner

    Regional Winners and Technology Bonus Prize Finalists

    The following teams were selected as Regional Winners and Technology Bonus Prize Finalists.

    Region Regional Winners and Technology Bonus Prize Finalists
    Appalachia and South

    Regional Winner: Super Compact Wireless Charging Infrastructure (Self-Res Power), The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

      California

      Regional Winner: Mechanochemical Recycling of LCO Batteries, Stanford University

        Carolinas

        Regional Winner: Self-Powered Autonomous Robot for Power Lines, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

        Technology Bonus Prize Finalist: Solar Shepherds – Agrivoltaics Solutions, Appalachian State University

        Great Lakes

        Regional Winner: Natrion, Boston College, Indiana University, and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

        Technology Bonus Prize Finalists: Alpha Nur, The University of Chicago and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

        Mid-Atlantic

        Regional Winner: Lignolix: Unlocking the Value of Lignin, University of Delaware

        Technology Bonus Prize Finalists: ElectroMain, The George Washington University, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and Washington University in St. Louis

        New York Tri-State Area

        Regional Winner: Smart i-Floor, University of Connecticut

        Technology Bonus Prize Finalists: Pantheon, A Carbon-Negative Cement Replacement, The State University of New York at Binghamton

        Northeast

        Regional Winner: Plug-and-Play Nuclear Energy Generator, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

        Technology Bonus Prize Finalists: Mesophase Steam Condensers, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

        Northern Plains

        Regional Winner: Recycling of Spent Lithium Ion Batteries, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

        Southeast

        Regional Winner: Structural Piezoelectric Supercapacitors, University of Miami

        Texas

        Regional Winner: Magnetic Gears – FluxWorks, Texas A&M University

        West

        Regional Winner: Deployable Off-grid CSP Solar Thermal Desalination, University of Hawai'i

        Technology Bonus Prize Finalists: Future Heat, The University of Utah

         

        Technology Bonus Prize Semifinalists

        The Technology Bonus Prize Finalists were selected from the following semifinalists, selected for each of the regions.

        REGION Technology Bonus Prize Semifinalists
        Appalachia and South
        • REMS, Mississippi State University
        • Biofuel and Graphene from Biomass Wastes, Mississippi State University
        • Hydrocarbon-to-Geothermal Well Conversion and CCS, Tulane University
        • Eco-Friendly Energy Storage for Renewable Sources, Missouri University of Science and Technology
        California
        • Low-Cost Carbon Capture, Ready for Scale-up, California Institute of Technology
        • Leading Renewable Energy – Small Modular Reactors, University of California San Diego and California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
        • Fundusol, Stanford University and Carnegie Mellon University
        Carolinas
        • Appalachian Biochar, Appalachian State University
        • GEOEXPLORE, Duke University
        • Mifi-DC Systems – Microreactors for EV Trucking, Duke University
        • Solar Shepherds – Agrivoltaics Solutions, Appalachian State University
        Great Lakes
        • Affordable Housing Community Energy Storage, University of Wisconsin-Madison and University of Kentucky
        • Carbonbusters, Purdue University
        • Alpha Nur, The University of Chicago and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
        • Thermo Elephant Group, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
        Mid-Atlantic
        • Geothermal Cooling Solves Heat Stress Deaths, University of Maryland
        • Flow Solutions, University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University
        • ElectroMain, The George Washington University, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and Washington University in St. Louis
        • Nuclear Heat Exchanger for Brine Treatment – Radical Energy and Materials, The Pennsylvania State University
        • Skibo Thermal Energy Storage Solution w/CSP, Carnegie Mellon University
        • Electrospun Photocatalytic Mats for Hydrogen Power, The Ohio State University
        New York Tri-State Area
        • Pantheon, A Carbon-Negative Cement Replacement, The State University of New York at Binghamton
        • Tri-Sol: A 3-in-1 Solar Skylight System, University of New Haven
        Northeast
        • Electricity Production with Negative Emissions, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
        • Mesophase Steam Condensers, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
        • Plug-and-Play Nuclear Energy Generator, Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
        • Roll-Up Roll-On Solar Panels, The University of Vermont
        Northern Plains
        • Geothermal Descaling Advanced Technology, University of North Dakota
        • Iowa State Mobile Microgrid, Iowa State University
        Southeast
        • BitPump – Crypto Mining Heat Pump, Georgia Institute of Technology and George Mason University
        • Combining Latest Tech to Accelerate PV Adoption, Georgia Institute of Technology
        • Capturing Ammonia in Wastewater Applications, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
        Texas
        • Bison Underground – A Beneficial Synergy, Carbon Capture and Soil Health, The University of Oklahoma
        • GeoEnergy, The University of Oklahoma
        • Plug and Play SMR-Hydrogen Microgrid, The University of Texas at Dallas
        • Solar Mineralis, The University of Tulsa
        West
        • Future Heat, The University of Utah
        • A.B.O. Sustainable Rare Earth Elements, University of Alaska Anchorage
        • Energy Pod for Long Duration Energy Storage, Arizona State University

         

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