American-Made Challenges


Power At Sea Prize

Create reliable and cost-effective renewable power at sea to support Powering the Blue Economy™ initiatives. #PowerAtSea Prize
PBE: Power at Sea Prize APPLY! Webinar
Webinars, Recordings, & OpenSeas Office Hours


Our oceans are a crucial asset: a precious habitat to millions of species, a vital carbon sink, and a key determinant of environmental and human health. Society’s growing need for ocean-derived food, materials, energy, and knowledge is fueling growth in next-generation maritime or “blue” technologies. This effort requires access to consistent, renewable power untethered from land-based grids. 


With reliable and cost-effective renewable power at sea, competitors in the Powering the Blue Economy™ Power at Sea Prize could help us come to a greater understanding of the world’s oceans. The prize aims to nurture innovative technologies that utilize the power inherent in the ocean to enable sustainable and responsible use of resources, better prediction and tracking of tropical storms, better monitoring of aquaculture for food security in coastal communities, greater understanding of the ocean’s role in climate change mitigation, and more. 

The Power at Sea Prize, which expands on the Ocean Observing Prize, is structured to support competitors through the early stages of developing a new system, subsystem, or component from original conception to teaming to a testable stage of initial development. 

The prize aims to be a proving ground for ideas that have not yet had the opportunity to flourish and is structured so competitors end the prize with concepts, materials, and media collateral to better position them for future technology development.


Prize Structure 

Through two phases, CONCEPT and DEVELOP, the Power at Sea Prize will provide winners with access to direct support, including trainings, testing assets, and new connections that aim to accelerate the advancement of concepts into real prototypes. 


In the CONCEPT Phase, competitors will select a blue economy application that their proposed system, subsystem, or component will support, and an integration challenge their solution intends to resolve. (See official rules for complete lists of challenges and applications). At the end of this phase, up to 20 winners will be awarded from a cash prize pool of up to $200,000. 


In the DEVELOP Phase, teams will continue their concept development and prepare it for future technology development after the prize. Up to 20 phase winners will be awarded from a cash prize pool of up to $1,500,000.


Prize Phases


The competition is open to individuals; private entities (for-profits and nonprofits); nonfederal government entities such as states, counties, tribes, and municipalities; and academic institutions, subject to the requirements detailed in the official rules


The Power at Sea Prize was established by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office in collaboration with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Sea Grant, NOAA Ocean Acidification Program, and NOAA Fisheries Office of Aquaculture. The prize is part of the American-Made program and is administered by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.


Solutions that help shape the future

Are you an expert in marine energy, or just an ocean lover with big ideas? Bring your innovations to life and help power the blue economy. #PowerAtSea Prize


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

If you want to subscribe to updates about the prize or have any questions, you may use the contact feature on the HeroX platform, or .  



Challenge Updates

Don't Forget to Apply!

July 9, 2024, 9:06 a.m. PDT by NREL Prize Moderator (Amanda)

The deadline to apply for the PBE: Power at Sea Prize is: July 26, 2024, 3:00 p.m. MDT/ 5:00pm EDT


Questions? Join us for the: PBE: Power at Sea Prize APPLY! Webinar

We'll walk through the process to apply using HeroX and will answer questions live. Register here:


Can't make it? Post your general questions on the forum.


Looking for more personalized feedback on your submission? Schedule a one-on-one with OpenSeas or stop by an office hours:

Office hours

OpenSeas, through the Power Connector Program, is providing open office hours to support teams participating in the challenge. Registration will be via the Calendly application identified below.

Scheduled multiple times during June and July.

  • Tuesdays – 18 June through 23 July, from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm ET
  • Friday – 21 June, from 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET
  • Wednesdays – 26 June through 24 July, from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm ET 
  • Register here through calendly. 


Multiple 30-minute availabilities for providing support to individual teams to answer questions and provide mentoring. Requestors may reserve appointments for fixed available slots via the Calendly app, or schedule other times by contacting

Fixed 30-Minute Availabilities:

  • Thursday - 20 June, from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm ET
  • Tuesdays – 25 June through 23 July, from 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm ET
  • Wednesdays – 26 June through 24 July, from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • Register here through calendly.

Open Scheduling

  • Check availability from 18 June through 23 July
  • Contact

Register for Upcoming Webinars, View Past Recordings, & Sign-up for Time with OpenSeas

June 20, 2024, 3:36 p.m. PDT by Libby Arnold

Dear Power at Sea Prize Community, 

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the Power at Sea Prize “Ask!” and “Explore!” webinars. Your engagement and curiosity truly enriched the discussions. For those who missed the live sessions or wish to revisit key moments, we’re pleased to announce that the recordings are now available on our American-Made Challenges YouTube channel. Please click on the links above to access the recordings.

Looking ahead, we’re excited to continue our webinar series with two more dynamic sessions, designed to further your understanding and spark your innovative spirit in marine energy solutions:

Monday, June 24 at 2 p.m. ET (12 p.m. MT)

Join our experts from the Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office, Pacific Northwest National Lab, and National Renewable Energy Laboratory as we delve into an early-stage marine energy use case. This session will outline the specific challenges, the communities impacted, and the abundant opportunities available for new innovators. We aim to build a diverse community of innovators, welcoming those historically underrepresented in STEM and individuals new to Marine Energy. Don’t miss this chance to bring your ideas to life and compete in the first phase of the prize, CONCEPT, for a part of the $200,000 cash prize. 

Click here to register for the Innovate! webinar.

Tuesday, June 25, at 12.30 p.m. ET (10:30 a.m. MT)

Friday, June 28, at 4 p.m. ET (2 p.m. MT)

Taking an innovative idea to a successfully sustained enterprise that delivers its value to the world requires two major components that proceed in parallel – the development of technology, and the development of the business opportunity. This webinar will discuss the commercialization process – and how to increase the probability of your success beyond the Power at Sea Challenge.

Register here through Calendly.

Finally, do you need mentorship with your CONCEPT Phase submission? Then sign up for a (free!) individual team consultation, or join the open office hours provided by our prize Power Connector: OpenSeas. Their organization is here to provide invaluable support to all the teams participating in the challenge. Click here to see specific times available.

Don’t wait! Register now to secure your spot in the Power At Sea Prize: Innovate! webinar, OpenSeas Webinar: From Idea to Implementation. Be sure to sign up for consulting time with OpenSeas, so that your team can make the most of these opportunities to enhance your submissions.

Looking forward to connecting soon,

The Power at Sea Prize Administrative Team

Celebrate Earth Day by Joining the Power at Sea Prize: Explore Webinar!

April 18, 2024, 1 p.m. PDT by Libby Arnold

Celebrate Earth Day by joining the Power at Sea Prize: Explore webinar, on April 22, at 2 p.m. ET. This enlightening session will introduce the crucial role you can play in advancing sustainable solutions for marine renewable energy. We’ll cover the various types, practical applications, and the challenges facing the field. We’ll also review the basic details of the Power at Sea Prize, including its structure, cash prizes, and important submission reminders. 

Whether you’re a stakeholder in marine technologies, a researcher, or simply curious about marine renewable energy, this webinar will equip you with essential information and an opportunity to engage with experts from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Don’t miss out on this informative event! Click here to register

Join Us for the upcoming Power at Sea Prize: Ask webinar

April 1, 2024, 1:31 p.m. PDT by NREL Prize Moderator (Amanda)

Have any burning questions about the Power at Sea Prize competition? Curious about the challenge areas, blue economy applications, or need clarity on the submission process? Then join us for our upcoming 30-minute Power at Sea Prize: Ask webinar on Wednesday, April 3, at 1 p.m. ET

This unique webinar marks the beginning of our webinar series Power at Sea: Ask, Explore, Innovate, Apply and offers competitors the opportunity to engage directly with our experts. 

This ‘Ask Me Anything’ style webinar is designed just for you. Whether you’re brainstorming your first concept or fine-tuning your submission, this is an invaluable chance to get insights directly from the source. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Exclusive Insights: Deep dive into the objectives and expectations of the Power at Sea Prize. 
  • Live Q&A: Our experts will be on hand to answer your questions in real-time. 
  • Guidance and Support: Learn more about the resources available to help your submission stand out. 

Don’t let this wave of information pass you by! Click here to register for the webinar and secure your spot in what promises to be an enlightening session. 

Looking forward to seeing you there! 

Informational Webinar: Join us to learn more about the Power at Sea Prize

Nov. 27, 2023, 3:56 p.m. PST by NREL Prize Moderator (Amanda)

Wednesday, November 29, 2023 at 11:00am MT/1:00pm ET

The Powering the Blue Economy™: Power at Sea Prize is seeking to advance marine-powered technologies that could help researchers realize a greater understanding of the world’s oceans. 

Through two phases, the prize will provide winners with access to direct support, including training, testing, and new connections with the goal of accelerating the advancement of marine energy concepts into real prototypes. Join this informational webinar to learn more about: 

  • Deadlines and eligibility 
  • CONCEPT Phase rules 
  • How to put together a strong application 
  • The challenge areas and blue economy applications to build your technology around 

Prize administrators will also leave time to answer participant questions at the end. 

Register to join here.

Webinars, Recordings, & OpenSeas Office Hours