X Challenge®


Fluid Genius X Challenge®

Identify a recurring problem that plagues your industry and could be solved using a combination of fluid system components.

This challenge is closed


This challenge is closed


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Thank you so much for your participation in the Fluid Genius Challenge! The challenge is closed to further entries.


Create the manufacturing infrastructure of the future

The world needs more Macgyvers like you. You have an extraordinary knack for identifying problems and creating improvements.

We need your ingenuity to identify a recurring problem in a critical gas or liquid process and develop a solution to that problem using an assembly of fluid system components. Examples of fluid system components are stainless steel items like valves, tubing, filters, regulators, fittings, etc. that work on tubing 2" or smaller in diameter.

The challenge is ideal for someone in engineering, operations, or maintenance. The industry could be aerospace, chemical/petrochemical, food processing, life sciences, oil and gas, power, semiconductor, ship building, alternative energy or any other industry with a critical gas or liquid application.


How do I get started?

First, head over to the Nagging Fluid System Challenge to tell us about the problem you have identified. Then, come back here to submit your solution.

In the meantime click "ACCEPT CHALLENGE" above to register for the challenge and check out the Guidelines for complete details.


What are fluid systems? Fluid systems heat, cool, pressurize, purify, produce energy, or in some other way manage a liquid or gas using fluidic components such as (but not limited to) valves, tubing, filters, regulators, and fittings.


This challenge is of interest to an international manufacturer and distributor of industrial-grade, stainless steel fluid system components.

Guidelines updated August 3, 2017.


This challenge is of interest to an international manufacturer and distributor of industrial-grade, stainless steel fluid system components. We’re looking for new and creative ways to assemble standard fluid system components to solve a problem that exists in an industrial environment.


What are we asking you to do?

We need your help in identifying problems in an industrial environment and proposing a solution that is a simple assembly of fluid system components.

First, head over to the Nagging Fluid Systems Challenge to submit the problem you identified. Once you have submitted the problem, come back to the Fluid Genius Challenge (that’s where you are now) to submit your solution.


Eligible Industries

We are looking for new uses of assembled fluid system components that could be sold to the following industries. If you have a product idea for an industry not listed here, please comment in the Forum.

  • Aerospace
  • Alternative Fuel Vehicles
  • Automotive
  • Biotechnology
  • Chemical Plant
  • Dairy
  • Fine Chemical
  • Food and Beverage
  • Instruments: Process and Analytical
  • Natural Gas Processing Plant
  • OEM Machinery
  • Offshore Oil & Gas
  • Oil Refinery
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Power Plant
  • Pulp & Paper
  • Semiconductor
  • Tire Manufacturing

Why did we choose these industries?

These industries typically purchase fluid system components like the ones listed below. They often purchase individual components and need to combine the components together to use them. The goal of this initiative is to identify products that can be assembled in unique ways to solve problems, packaged as a system or sub-system, and sold to these industries.


Eligible Fluid System Components

Your assembly design must contain primarily high-quality, stainless steel fluidic components in a size of 2” or less. We recommend you choose primarily from stainless steel components manufactured by Tylok, Swagelok, Hy-Lok or Ham-Let. Components from these websites must comprise a significant amount of the total value of your design and be integral to the design. These websites will provide pricing with a simple registration. 

  • Tube Fittings are components that connect to tubing.
  • Valves regulate, direct or control the flow of a liquid or gas by opening, closing, or partially obstructing various passageways.
  • Check and Relief Valves prevent the flow of a liquid or gas in one direction or relieve the pressure.
  • Regulators provide reliable pressure control.
  • Quick Connects are an easy way to connect and disconnect fluid lines.
  • Measurement devices such as gauges, flow sensors, and thermometers
  • Tubing can be made in a wide range of sizes, forms, and alloys and other materials such as stainless steel, nylon, and rubber.
  • Filters allow you to filter your liquids and gasses, preventing pump contamination and damage.
  • Hoses are used to accommodate movement or vibration in a fluid system.

Your assembly design should contain standard products wherever possible. It should not contain newly invented components.





% Importance

Problem Definition (30%)




The overall problem is well described, including the situation around it. 


Impact of the problem

The impact of the problem is significant. Impact may be described in terms of downtime, scrap or rework, lower quality product, leaked gas or liquid, labor time, replacement parts, regulatory compliance, environmental damage, unnecessary supplies, wasted or lost energy, labor costs, or other costs.



The problem is significant and pervasive, existing across multiple plants and industries.


Proposed Solution (70%)



Solution description

The solution is well designed and solves the problem. The solution includes a layout of the solution (detailed sketch, 2D or 3D CAD drawing, etc.).


Benefits of the solution

The benefits of the solution overcome the cost of implementation. The solution makes or saves money for the plant.


Fluid system components

The assembly design contains primarily high-quality, stainless steel fluidic components in a size of 2” or less. The design contains standard products wherever possible.


The assembly design has potential to generate revenue for a fluid system component manufacturer or assembler of these components.


Implementation Process

There is a viable way for your solution to actually be implemented; it’s a realistic response to the problem.


Ingenuity and Simplicity

Solution is insightful, creative, simple, elegant, and/or resourceful.






Challenge Structure

Preliminary Concept - Up to 10 prizes of $500 each


  • WHAT: Submit your preliminary concept for feedback and review by the evaluation panel. Ensure your idea has merit before developing it further. Use the same submission form as your final entry. You can comment in the form on places where you would specifically like feedback from the sponsor.
  • WHEN: Submit as soon as you’re ready. The first 10 submissions worthy of continuing into the final design will receive prizes. Feedback will be provided within 14 days of submission.
  • HOW DO I WIN? Submissions will be awarded for preliminary feedback prizes if they satisfy the Problem Definition judging criteria and have the potential to satisfy the Proposed Solution judging criteria. See the Judging Criteria section above.


Final Design - 1 prize of up to $10,000. Up to 3 additional prizes of up to $5,000 each


  • WHAT: Submit your final design for consideration by the evaluation panel. You do not need to submit your preliminary concept in order to enter a final design.
  • WHEN: Submissions are due by November 16, 2017. See the complete timeline here.
  • HOW DO I WIN? Be scored higher than your competitors on the Judging Criteria scorecard above.




August 3, 2017

Preliminary Concept Winners

Announced on a rolling basis. Submit your concept early.

Final Design Submission Deadline

November 16, 2017

Winners Announced

December 12, 2017


Submission Form

Only the challenge sponsor will be able to see your submission. You may submit more than one entry to this challenge.

The Problem

  1. Describe the fluid system and the associated problem. Remember, your problem must exist in an industrial environment, in at least one of the eligible industries, and be solvable using the eligible fluid system components. (2000 characters max)
  2. Select the industry/industries in which this problem occurs [check boxes]
  3. What does the fluid system do? How does the problem you have identified impact the fluid system’s function? (1000 characters max)
  4. Explain how the system you described involves the use of fluid system components? Hint: this is a good indication of whether or not the problem you have described could be solved using fluid system components. Refer to the list of eligible components in the challenge guidelines. (1000 characters max)
  5. Speculate on how this problem could be solved using the eligible fluid system components. You do not need to propose a complete design. (1000 characters max)
  6. What are the system’s operating parameters? Consider parameters such as temperature, pressure, system media, the amount of flow required, types of controls, etc. (1000 characters max)
  7. What conditions exist when you see (or expect to see) the problem? (1000 characters max)
  8. How is the problem monitored today (if applicable)? (1000 characters max)
  9. How pervasive is the problem in your plant (depth of the problem)? How pervasive is this problem in other industries and applications (breadth of the problem)? Problems that occur in multiple areas of the plant and in other plants like yours and problems that occur across different industries will be most favorably considered. (1000 characters max)
  10. What is the impact of the problem? The impact may be described in terms of downtime, scrap or rework, lower quality product, leaked gas or liquid, labor time, replacement parts, regulatory compliance, environmental damage, unnecessary supplies, wasted or lost energy, labor costs, or other costs. Use your answer to (9) to assist you in quantifying the impact of the problem across multiple plants and/or industries. Note that a cost can be either an expense or a lost opportunity to conduct the process in a better way. (1000 characters max)
  11. Upload any supporting materials (optional).

Your Solution

  1. Describe your solution in as much detail as possible. (2000 characters max)
  2. Upload a mockup of your design in PDF format.
  3. List all fluid system components contained in your design and their part numbers. Ensure you primarily select components and part numbers from one of the two manufacturers listed in the Eligible Fluid System Components section of the guidelines. (2000 characters max)
  4. What aspects of your solution, if any, need to be custom made? Remember, an ideal solution is simply an assembly of eligible fluid system components. (1000 characters max)
  5. How does your solution integrate into the fluid system and solve the problem you described above? (1000 characters max)
  6. What are the benefits of your solution? How does it solve the impact of the problem you described above? (1000 characters max)
  7. Do you think the benefits of your solution overcome the cost of implementation? Justify your answer. (1000 characters max)
  8. Explain why this solution would save money or make more money for the plant? (1000 characters max)
  9. What are the possible applications or markets that this assembled design could sell into? Imagine you are a manufacturer of fluid system components or an assembler of these components, where would you sell this assembly? (1000 characters max)


Additional Rules

Participation Eligibility:  The Challenge is open to all individuals, private teams, public teams, and collegiate teams. Teams may originate from any country.  Submissions must be made in English.  All prize-related communication will be in English.

No specific qualifications or expertise in working with fluid management systems is required.

To be eligible to compete, you must comply with all the terms of the Challenge as defined in the Challenge-Specific Agreement.

Registration and Submissions:  Submissions must be made online (only), via upload to the website, on or before dates noted on the timeline.

Intellectual Property: If any intellectual property is contained within the submission, it will remain with the innovator. However, the innovator must agree to grant the Challenge Sponsor a  royalty free, irrevocable, non-exclusive license in respect of all such intellectual property rights. Please see the legal agreement for complete details.

Judging Panel: The determination of the winners will be made by a group of people including thought leaders, influencers, and people with unique insight for fluid systems management.  Judges will have expertise in different industries that use fluid control equipment and components; in the design, installation and maintenance of fluid control systems; or in the operations and/or business management where fluid control processes are used. The Challenge Sponsor reserves the right to not award any prizes