The American-Made Solar Prize Round 7 is a $4.2 million prize competition designed to energize U.S. solar innovation through a series of contests that accelerate the entrepreneurial process from years to months. Competitors leverage the American-Made Network, our innovation engine of more than 400 organizations, including world-class experts at the U.S. Department of Energy’s 17 national labs, clean tech accelerators, incubators, universities, facilities, and more.
JEDI Contest: Creating Space for Change
The Solar Prize Round 7 includes an optional additional challenge that focuses on advancing solar in underserved communities. Participants who choose to incorporate this initiative into their solutions have the chance to be considered for a new Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Contest and earn part of the $200,000 bonus cash prize!
New to Round 7: Power Up Your Idea
For those who have a great idea for a solar technology that could be commercialized in 3 to 5 years, but need a boost to take their innovation to the next level, Round 7 offers the new Power Up Contest. This contest is designed to support and advance new and diverse teams that have compelling applications but aren’t selected to advance to the Set! Contest. Up to 10 teams may be selected to split a $100,000 prize pool and receive tailored business support.
More than $3 Million in Incentives for Innovation
The Ready!, Set!, and Go! Contests fast-track efforts to identify, develop, and test disruptive solutions to solar industry needs for a total of $3 million in cash prizes and $900,000 in vouchers that can be used at national laboratories and other voucher facilities to develop, test, and validate. Each contest has a performance period when participants work to advance their solutions.
The Ready!, Set!, and Go! Contests
- Ready! Contest
20 winners / $50,000 cash prize each and optional JEDI Contest prize / Power Up Contest
Winners are selected after identifying an impactful idea or solution for a solar technology that could be commercialized in 3 to 5 years, addressing a critical need in the solar industry;
- Set! Contest
10 winners / $100,000 cash prize each, $75,000 support voucher each, and optional JEDI Contest prize
Competitors work to substantially advance their technology solution toward a viable and promising proof of concept.
- Go! Contest
2 winners / $500,000 cash prize each, $75,000 support voucher each, and optional JEDI Contest prize
Competitors work to substantially advance their solution from proof of concept to a refined prototype and find a partner to perform a pilot test of the prototype.
Read the rules for full details on each contest.
During the competition, competitors in the Set! and Go! Contests pitch and demonstrate proofs of concept and prototypes to a judging panel and audience at two live, in-person Demo Day events. Demo Days are opportunities to meet competitors, Connectors, Power Connectors, and other members of the American-Made Network. Demo Days culminate in the announcement of Set! finalists and Go! winners.
Round 7 seeks hardware and software solutions alike. The prize invites anyone, individually or as a team, to transform a conceptual solution into an impactful product and business.
Connecting You to the Innovation Engine
The American-Made Network provides support to Solar Prize competitors throughout the competition and is comprised of national labs, incubators, investors, facilities, and seasoned industry mentors. The American-Made Network strengthens and scales the critical connections needed to grow new businesses, develop solutions, and sustain American innovation.
Join and connect with Network members
Who can Compete?
Competitors are entrepreneurial individuals or teams legally residing or based in the United States. Competitors can be individuals of one or multiple organizations, students, university faculty members, small business owners, researchers, or anyone with the desire and drive to transform an idea into an impactful solution.
Sign up for updates by “following” the prize at the top of this page.
The Power Connectors for Solar Prize Round 7 have put together several educational videos to assist all of our teams with their submissions, business plans, and more. Please return to this page to find more learning modules, as we will add more as they are released.
Below you will find the title and link of each of the learning modules below. We highly suggest you reach out to the Power Connector that hosted the module if you have follow up questions. Find their contacts here: https://www.herox.com/solarprizeround7/resource/1363
Check out the following videos as you’re preparing your submission to learn more about how to best position your innovation:
If you have further questions, stream the informational webinar recording, view the presentation slides, or reach out to prize administrators at . And don’t forget: The deadline for all submissions is Wednesday, Sept. 27 at 5 p.m. ET. Just click “Solve This Challenge” on the HeroX page!
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 follow feature on the HeroX platform or message us directly at .
Looking for assistance with your submission? Contact one of our Power Connectors!
The American-Made Solar Prize is a multimillion-dollar prize competition designed to energize U.S. solar innovation through a series of contests that accelerate the entrepreneurial process from years to months. The American-Made Solar Prize is directed and administered by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office. Learn more.