American-Made Challenges

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Geothermal Manufacturing Prize

Catalyze geothermal manufacturing innovation by harnessing the rapid advances in additive manufacturing.

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stage:
Enter
prize:
$4,650,000 in total prizes

This challenge is closed

Overview

Challenge Overview

The American-Made Geothermal Manufacturing Prize (Geothermal Prize) is designed to spur innovation and address manufacturing challenges fundamental to operating in harsh geothermal environments. This prize further supports the ability of the geothermal industry to reach the target of 60 GWe of geothermal capacity by 2050  as outlined in the recently released GeoVision study

As part of the American-Made Challenges series, the Geothermal Prize unites the world’s best-in-class research base with the unparalleled entrepreneurial support system of the American-Made Network. Consisting of pioneering maker spaces, dozens of energy incubators, universities, and 17 DOE National Laboratories, the Network is primed to create a sweeping portfolio of innovations to demonstrate the promise of additive manufacturing. 

Prize Stages

Competitors in the Ready!, Set!, Make!, and Geo! Contests participate in four escalating challenges. The contests provide a total of $4.65 million in incentives—$3.25 million in cash prizes, $1 million in vouchers, and $400,000 in field testing costs—to incentivize driving additively manufactured geothermal innovations from concept to prototype testing in two years through an accelerated schedule.


 

Guidelines

Challenge 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

 

Timeline
Updates 53

Challenge Updates

Congratulations, Geothermal Manufacturing Prize Finalists!

Jan. 13, 2022, 12:12 p.m. PST by Jackie Petre

On Thursday, Jan. 13, the U.S. Department of Energy announced five Geothermal Manufacturing Prize finalist teams moving on to Geo! Contest. Each team won $150,000 in cash prizes and $75,000 in technical support vouchers. 

These teams were selected for successfully fabricating prototypes of their additive manufacturing designs, identifying Geo! partner(s), and using continual customer and stakeholder feedback to substantially advance their prototypes during the Make! Contest. 

Congratulations to the following Geothermal Prize finalist teams: 

  • Baker Hughes (Houston, TX): This team is developing high expansion packers with additively manufactured backup rings. With an inventive, interlocking petal design, these backup rings will improve the zonal isolation in both open and cased hole geothermal wells.
  • Downhole Emerging Technologies (Houston, TX): This team is developing an innovative alternative to traditional packer systems. The retrievable, all-metal packer system is designed specifically for high temperatures, extreme pressures, and corrosion experienced in geothermal wells.
  • PLUGS (Morgantown, WV): This team is developing a sparger system that uses high-pressure air for artificial lift, which replaces the traditional electric pumps. The technology addresses maintenance issues experienced by existing pump technologies due to harsh geothermal conditions.
  • The Bit Guys (Morgantown, WV): This team is developing an air-hammer drill bit with carbide cutter retention technology that tackles drilling-related challenges in geothermal environments. Basement rock is notoriously difficult to drill through and this bit technology addresses both the strength and temperature requirements for geothermal drilling.
  • Ultra-High Temperature Logging Tool (Houston, TX): This team is developing a technology that uses a labyrinthian heat sink to reduce thermal emissivity and increase the exposure time of temperature sensitive electronic components. The technology solves limitations around maximum temperature rating and lifetime of electronics in logging and measurement tools.

These five teams are now competing in the Geo! Contest, where they will test their fully fabricated additively manufactured prototypes using Geo! partner facilities and use continual customer and stakeholder feedback to substantially advance their prototypes. Two final winners will earn $500,000 in cash prizes each and up to $200,000 in field-testing cost reimbursement. The final winners are expected to be announced in August 2022. 

Congratulations, again, to the finalist teams and good luck in the Geo! Contest! 


Find Out Who Advances as a Geothermal Prize Finalist!

Jan. 12, 2022, 1:27 p.m. PST by Jackie Petre

Tomorrow, Jan. 13, up to five Geothermal Manufacturing Prize teams will advance as finalists, each earning part of $1 million in prizes. Find out who moves on at the Geothermal Manufacturing Prize Make! Demo Day Finalist Announcement.

Since learning of their status as Set! Contest semifinalists in March 2021, nine teams have been working diligently, preparing their technologies for the next milestone: creating a prototype to showcase ahead of Make! Demo Day. For the past several months, these teams have been fabricating prototypes of their additive manufacturing designs, identifying Geo! partner(s), and using continual customer and stakeholder feedback to substantially advance their prototypes. 

Now, it’s time to find out who advances to the Geo! Contest.

If you’ve been following the progress of the Geothermal Manufacturing Prize, you won’t want to miss this exciting milestone! Join the live Make! Demo Day Finalist Announcement tomorrow, Thursday, Jan. 13, at 2 p.m. ET. Register here.


You’re Invited! Geothermal Manufacturing Prize Make! Demo Day

Dec. 28, 2021, 12:32 p.m. PST by Jackie Petre

The Geothermal Manufacturing Prize Make! Demo Day Finalist Announcement is Thursday, Jan. 13, and you’re invited to join! At this virtual event, up to five teams will be selected to move on as finalists in the Geo! Contest, splitting $1 million in prizes

Since learning of their status as Set! Contest semifinalists in March 2021, nine teams have been working diligently, preparing their technologies for the next milestone: creating a prototype to showcase ahead of Make! Demo Day. For the past several months, these teams have been fabricating prototypes of their additive manufacturing designs, identifying Geo! partner(s), and using continual customer and stakeholder feedback to substantially advance their prototypes. 

Now, it’s time to present their technologies to a panel of expert reviewers and find out who advances to the Geo! Contest.

If you’ve been following the progress of the Geothermal Manufacturing Prize, you won’t want to miss this exciting milestone! Join the live Make! Demo Day Finalist Announcement on Thursday, Jan. 13, at 2 p.m. ET. Register here.


Congratulations, Geothermal Manufacturing Prize Semifinalists!

April 1, 2021, 8:38 a.m. PDT by Jackie Petre

On Wednesday, March 31, the U.S. Department of Energy announced 10 semifinalist teams in the American-Made Geothermal Manufacturing Prize at the NextGen Geo event. Each team won $100,000 in cash prizes and $75,000 in technical support vouchers. These teams will now move on to the Make! Contest, where they’ll create a prototype and compete for part of the $750,000 prize pool. 

Congratulations to the Geothermal Prize semifinalists: 

  • Drilling:
    • The Bit Guys from Morgantown, WV
    • Team Ozark Integrated Circuits from Fayetteville, AR
    • Team AC from Cambridge, MA
  • Zonal Isolation: 
    • Team Baker Hughes from Houston, TX
    • Team Welltec from Katy, TX
    • Team Downhole Emerging Technologies from Houston, TX
    • Team Schlumberger (Huilin Tu) from Houston, TX
  • Logging and Production: 
    • Team PLUGS from Morgantown, WV
    • Team Ultra-High Temperature Logging Tool from Houston, TX
    • Team Multiscale Systems from Worcester, MA

You can view a recording of the NextGen Geo event here.

A new prize competition called the American-Made Geothermal Lithium Extraction Prize was also announced during the NextGen Geo event. This $3 million prize is designed to find solutions that de-risk and increase market viability for direct lithium extraction from geothermal brines.

Anyone affiliated with a U.S. academic institution, individually or as a team, is invited to participate in the Geothermal Lithium Extraction Prize. Learn more about competing at the informational webinar on Monday, April 12. Register here

Congratulations, again, to the Geothermal Manufacturing Prize semifinalists and good luck in Make!


Tomorrow: Join the NextGen Geo Event

March 30, 2021, 1:57 p.m. PDT by Jackie Petre

See who becomes a Geothermal Manufacturing Prize semifinalist and learn about a new prize at tomorrow’s NextGen Geo event! Tune in at 1 p.m. ET to hear industry thought leaders and U.S. Department of Energy leadership speak about opportunities to impact the clean energy economy through geothermal workforce development. Plus, a networking event and several big announcements, including: 

  • Geothermal Collegiate Competition finalist teams
  • Geothermal Prize semifinalists
  • A prize competition aimed at developing technical solutions for economic extraction of lithium from geothermal brines.

Whether you’re actively participating in the Geothermal Manufacturing Prize or looking for new opportunities to impact the clean every economy, we highly recommend you tune in for this announcement.

Find out who moves on to the Make! Contest and learn about the latest prize competition tomorrow, March 31 at 1 p.m. ET. 

Register now for the NextGen Geo event


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