To answer your question, please see Section V.1 Universal Contest Requirements in the Official Hardware Track Rules:
"Your submission for the Ready!, Set!, and Go! Contests is subject to following terms and conditions:
• If any team member is actively receiving funding from SETO at the Ready! submission deadline, SETO will review any potential prize awards, as well as other DOE funding, and make a decision as to whether awarding a prize to individuals or entities already receiving funding is in line with the program policy factors stated later in these rules (Section V.14)."
Section V.14 Program Policy Factors:
"In addition to the reviewers' scores, the below program policy factors may be considered in determining winners: […]
• Whether the use of additional DOE funds and provided resources continue to be nonduplicative and compatible with the stated goals of this program and DOE’s mission generally
• The degree to which the submission exhibits technological or programmatic diversity when compared to the existing DOE project portfolio and other competitors
• The level of industry involvement and demonstrated ability to accelerate commercialization and overcome key market barriers
• The degree to which the submission is likely to lead to increased employment and manufacturing in the United States or provide other economic benefit to U.S. taxpayers
• The degree to which the submission will accelerate transformational technological, financial, or workforce advances in areas that industry by itself is not likely to undertake because of technical or financial uncertainty
• The degree to which the submission supports complementary DOE efforts or projects, which, when taken together, will best achieve the research goals and objectives
• The degree to which the submission expands DOE’s funding to new competitors and recipients that have not been supported by DOE in the past
• The degree to which the submission exhibits team member diversity and the inclusion of underrepresented groups, with participants including but not limited to graduates and students of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and other minority serving institutions (MSIs) or members operating within Qualified Opportunity Zones or other underserved communities…"