American-Made Challenges

 9,195

E-ROBOT Prize

Catalyze the development of building envelope retrofit solutions that make retrofits easier, faster, safer and more accessible for workers.
stage:
E-ROBOT Teaming Session
prize:
$5 Million Dollars in total Cash Awards and Network Support
Overview

Challenge Overview

Prize Overview

As part of the American-Made Challenges series, the Envelope Retrofit Opportunities for Building Optimization Technologies (E-ROBOT) Prize unites the world’s best-in-class research base with the unparalleled entrepreneurial support system of the American-Made Network. Consisting of pioneering makerspaces, dozens of energy incubators, universities, and 17 U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) national laboratories, the Network is primed to create a sweeping portfolio of innovations to demonstrate the promise of advanced robotics for building envelope retrofits.

 

 

Advancements in robotics allow workers to reach places or perform activities that were previously impossible. For example, robots can safely enter small spaces and cavities, such as ductwork, to perform air-sealing or other efficiency activities. Robots can complement and support the existing workforce by creating new employment and business opportunities while also helping to ensure quality and consistency when installing energy efficiency measures.

The overarching goal of E-ROBOT is to catalyze the development of minimally invasive, low-cost, and holistic building envelope retrofit solutions that make retrofits easier, faster, safer, and more accessible for workers. Successful competitors will provide solutions that provide significant advancements in robot technologies that will advance the energy efficiency retrofit industry and develop building envelope retrofit technologies that meet the following criteria:

  • Holistic: The solution must include mapping, retrofit, sensing, and inspection.
  • Low cost: The solution should reduce costs significantly when compared to current state-of-the-art solutions. The target for reduction in costs should be based on a 50% reduction from the baseline costs of a fully implemented solution (not just hardware, software, or labor; the complete fully implemented solution must be considered). If costs are not at the 50% level, there should be a significant energy efficiency gain achieved.
  • Minimally invasive: The solution must not require building occupants to vacate the premises or require envelope teardown or significant envelope damage.
  • Utilizes long-lasting materials: Retrofit is done with safe, nonhazardous, and durable (30+ year lifespan) materials.
  • Completes time-efficient, high-quality installations: The results of the retrofit must meet common industry quality standards and be completed in a reasonable timeframe.
  • Provides opportunities to workers: The solution enables a net positive gain in terms of the workforce by bringing high tech jobs to the industry, improving worker safety, enabling workers to be more efficient with their time, improving envelope accessibility for workers, and/or opening up new business opportunities or markets.

The E-ROBOT Prize provides a total of $5 million in funding, including $4 million in cash prizes for competitors and an additional $1 million in awards and support to network partners. 

Through this prize, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will stimulate technological innovation, create new opportunities for the buildings and construction workforce, reduce building retrofit costs, create a safer and faster retrofit process, ensure consistent, high-quality installations, enhance construction retrofit productivity, and improve overall energy savings of the built environment.

 

Prize Structure

The E-ROBOT Prize is made up of two phases that will fast-track efforts to identify, develop, and validate disruptive solutions to meet building industry needs. Each phase will include a contest period when participants will work to rapidly advance their solutions. DOE invites anyone, individually or as a team, to compete to transform a conceptual solution into product reality.

Guidelines

Challenge Guidelines

Please review the official rules  for the complete application process and instructions for competing.

If you want to receive updates on the prize or have any questions, please subscribe by using the contact feature on the HeroX platform or message us directly at EROBOT.Prize@nrel.gov

 

 

Timeline
Updates 6

Challenge Updates

Upcoming E-ROBOT Events: Learn about building retrofits, expand your team, and get last-minute help with your submission!

April 9, 2021, 8:01 a.m. PDT by NREL Challenge

Dear E-ROBOT Innovators, 

Can you believe that submission day (May 12) is only 33 days away? To help you prepare and get your submissions in tip-top shape, we’ve lined up three exciting events for you: 

BUILDING RETROFIT TECHNOLOGY SCALING OPPORTUNITIES & TRENDS WEBINAR (April 15)

Please join us on a panel discussion with a group of building experts from NREL, RMI, GTI Energy, AEA, and ADL Ventures on the topic of Building Retrofit Technology Scaling Opportunities & Trends on April 15th, 13:00 -14:00 EST. The moderator of the event will be Diana Fisler, Principal & Building Material Consultant at ADL Ventures. The speakers of the event include:

  • Amy Egerter, Manager, Carbon-free Buildings, RMI
  • Brett Webster, Manager, Carbon-free buildings, RMI
  • Jason LaFleur, Sr. Program Manager, GTI Energy
  • Marcus Bianchi, Sr. Building Energy Research Engineer, NREL 
  • Meghan Duff, Sr. Associate, R&D projects at AEA

RSVP today at: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_r1KKSktjRCmzDPWrYO0Q6A

 

E-ROBOT PRIZE TEAM-UP TUESDAYS (Next up: April 13)

Starting March 30, join the open E-ROBOT Prize networking opportunity taking place every other Tuesday from 3-4 p.m. ET for a chance to meet other innovators who can help your team design a holistic, turnkey solution that addresses an industry problem for building envelope retrofits. 

 

E-ROBOT PRIZE OFFICE HOURS (April 21)

Interested in competing in the E-ROBOT Prize? Get your last-minute questions answered and receive one-on-one application support directly from the experts at the E-ROBOT Prize Office Hours session on Wednesday, April 21, at 1 p.m. ET. Teams that join the Office Hours session will have the opportunity to speak to representatives from the E-ROBOT Prize administrative team, Connectors, and Power Connectors who can help move your technology closer to winning part of the $4 million cash prize! Register now for E-ROBOT Prize Office Hours.

 

If you are an AMN Connector and wish to host a table at the Office Hours Event, please sign up: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdLYe8aw-zAR_a8cay7KEoIqrdAw5JBV7B4BDwltgQf-muXdQ/viewform?usp=sf_link by April 12th


This Wednesday! Join us for the E-ROBOT Prize Teaming Event

March 1, 2021, 8 a.m. PST by NREL Challenge

Event Date: Wednesday, March 3
Event Time: 1-2:30 p.m. ET 

Event Location: Online Event

If you are planning on participating in the E-ROBOT Prize, this Wednesday’s Teaming Event a must! You will hear about the current state of play in building retrofits and meet other innovators to team up with and design a holistic, turnkey solution that addresses the building envelope retrofit challenge. This is your chance to build a team of experts that can help move your technology closer to winning part of the $4 million cash prize!

Event Agenda

  • Panel Discussion - Understand industry, government, and startup perspectives on applying transformative technologies to improve envelope retrofits and building optimization.
  • Prize Overview - Hear directly from the E-ROBOT Prize team about the vision for the prize and what teams can expect.
  • Networking Session - Connect with other attendees to share your work, ask questions, and explore opportunities for teaming on your prize submission.

Don’t miss this opportunity to network and engage with industry peers ahead of the May 12 submission date. Register now for the E-ROBOT Prize Teaming Event!


Don’t Forget: E-ROBOT Prize Teaming Event on March 3

Feb. 22, 2021, 4:13 p.m. PST by NREL Challenge

Event Date: Wednesday, March 3
Event Time: 1-2:30 p.m. ET 

Event Location: Online Event

Those interested in competing in the E-ROBOT Prize are encouraged to join the E-ROBOT Prize Teaming Event on March 3, which will offer an opportunity to learn more about the current state of the industry and meet other innovators and potential collaborators.

Remember! Ultimate success in the E-ROBOT Prize will be heavily dependent on your team’s ability to seek out and build a holistic team to advance efforts in developing and commercializing the proposed solution. The E-ROBOT Teaming Event will connect startups, domain experts, and individuals interested in applying to the E-ROBOT prize. 


Event Agenda

  • Panel Discussion - Understand industry, government, and startup perspectives on applying transformative technologies to improve envelope retrofits and building optimization.
  • Prize Overview - Hear directly from the E-ROBOT Prize team about the vision for the prize and what teams can expect.
  • Networking Session - Connect with other attendees to share your work, ask questions, and explore opportunities for teaming on your prize submission.

The Teaming Event is open to all who want to compete for the $4 million cash prize pool. RSVP today!


Join us for the American Made Network E-ROBOT Prize: Teaming Event

Feb. 3, 2021, 8:59 a.m. PST by NREL Challenge

 

Mark Your Calendars - E-ROBOT Teaming Event - March 3rd!

 

Event Date: Wednesday, March 3
Event Time: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM ET 

Event Location: Online Event

Ultimate success in the E-ROBOT Prize will be heavily dependent on teams’ ability to seek out and build a holistic team to advance efforts to develop and/or commercialize the proposed solution. 

In support of this goal, American-Made Network Power Connector Newlab, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) are hosting an E-ROBOT Teaming Event to connect startups, domain experts, and individuals interested in applying to the E-ROBOT prize. The event will provide an opportunity to learn about the current state of play in building retrofits and meet other innovators to pair up with to design a holistic, turnkey solution that addresses the building envelope retrofit challenge. 


Event Agenda

  • Panel Discussion - Featuring industry, government and startup perspectives on applying transformative technologies to improve envelope retrofits and building optimization
  • Prize Overview - Hear directly from the E-ROBOT Prize team about the vision for the prize and what teams can expect
  • Networking Session - Connect with other attendees to share your work, ask questions and explore opportunities for teaming on your prize submission

The Teaming Event is open to all and we encourage you to RSVP today!


Don’t Forget—Phase 1 Kick-off Webinar Today!

Dec. 9, 2020, 5:45 a.m. PST by NREL Challenge

Have you registered for the E-ROBOT Phase 1 Informational Webinar yet? If not, now’s your chance!

Join the U.S. Department of Energy, Buildings Technology Office and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory today, Dec. 9, at 1 p.m. ET for this informational presentation.

During the webinar, the prize administrators will give an overview of the program, including timelines, competition rules, and working with the American-Made Network. 

If you’re interested in learning more about competing in this exciting competition, join the E-ROBOT Phase 1 Informational Webinar today, Dec. 9, at 1 p.m. ET! Register here. 


Forum 9
Teams 229
Resources
FAQ