The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) recently issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) to participate in DOE’s inaugural National Collegiate Wind Competition.
The National Collegiate Wind Competition is a forum for undergraduate college students of multiple disciplines to investigate innovative wind energy concepts; gain experience designing, building, and testing a wind turbine to perform according to a customized market data-derived business plan; and increase their knowledge of wind industry barriers. Successful teams will gain and then demonstrate knowledge of technology, finance, accounting, management, and marketing, providing lifelong technical and business skills.
The theme of the inaugural competition is to design and construct a lightweight, transportable wind turbine that can be used to power small electronic devices. A principal contest involves testing each team’s prototype wind turbine in a wind tunnel under specific conditions. Each team’s business plan and turbine will also be evaluated against other pre-weighted criteria. The third stage of the competition will be a team-to-team debate relating to current wind market drivers and issues. Teams will be judged on the members’ understanding of the issues posed to them, their communication of potential solutions, and their ability to promote constructive dialogue.
This competition is an opportunity for collegiate institutions to showcase student ingenuity and the programs that the students represent. In addition to this national recognition, the turbine from the college or university with the best overall score will be placed on temporary display at the DOE Headquarters building in Washington, D.C. The competition enables DOE to support innovative and forward-thinking educational institutions that incorporate renewable energy technologies, helping to foster the growth of the future wind energy industry and workforce.
The RFP is available on the Federal Business Opportunities website, solicitation number RFC-3-23003.
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Tom Gray, http://www.awea.org/blog/