Conductive materials are fundamental to nearly all energy use applications. Developing manufacturing processes for conductivity-enhanced materials in motors, generators, and renewable power technologies could lower costs and climate impacts while improving energy efficiency and other performance.
The competition aims to unite a diverse collection of researchers and inventors to develop transformative, cost-effective approaches and technologies to accelerate American entrepreneurship and pinpoint pathways for further research and development funding and technology transition efforts.
The Conductivity-enhanced materials for Affordable, Breakthrough Leapfrog Electric and thermal applications (CABLE) Conductor Manufacturing Prize aims to help supercharge our U.S. energy and manufacturing industries. Competitors must demonstrate significant enhancements in conductivity and affordability that enable U.S. manufacturers to leapfrog to next-generation materials.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO) launched the CABLE Conductor Manufacturing Prize to encourage such breakthrough conductivity-enhanced materials. Up to 4 Grand Prize winners will be selected in this three-stage, three-year contest.
CABLE Conductor Manufacturing Prize Stage Overview
Stage 1 (CLOSED):
Competitors submitted their breakthrough concepts to develop and manufacture a new, affordable, conductivity-enhanced material useable for electrical or thermal applications. Ten winners each received $25,000 in cash awards and a stipend for third-party testing of their material in Stage 2 of the prize. Stage 1 of the prize helped inform DOE about the minimum-conductivity enhancement and other property standards, as well as the types of support that competitors will likely need from DOE national laboratories or other American-Made Challenges Network providers in the next two stages of the prize.
Stage 2 (Open NOW):
Competitors will provide a sample of their material for electrical conductivity testing and preliminary plans to scale-up and manufacture the material according to prize requirements. Up to 6 competitors each will win $200,000 in cash awards and $100,000 in noncash voucher support to work with a DOE national laboratory (including user facilities) or other American-Made Challenges Network provider in Stage 3. Any eligible entity can compete in Stage 2 regardless of whether they were a competitor in Stage 1.
Competitors successful in Stage 2 will develop a larger sample of their conductivity-enhanced material. Competitors also must provide substantial background information on how the sample was made and plans to commercialize the material. At least three testing organizations will evaluate each material sample for conductivity and other characteristics. Scores will be based, in part, on the conductivity enhancement (size and extent of breakthrough), other important material characteristics, and leapfrog manufacturability and affordability. Up to 4 competitors will split a total prize pool of at least $2,000,000.
You can review the Stage 1 official rules or the Stage 2 rules when they are ready here.
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