The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Water Power Technologies Office is launching the Innovating Distributed Embedded Energy Prize (InDEEP) to encourage innovation in distributed embedded energy converter technology (DEEC-Tec, pronounced “deck tech”) to generate new, precommercial materials for wave energy conversion. This prize will challenge innovators from within and beyond wave energy to design and develop novel materials for marine energy applications that will lay the foundation for generating electricity at the grid scale.

This three-phase, two-year competition is offering a combined cash prize pool up to $2.3 million. Teams will also receive technical support, teaming support, and other forms of mentorship throughout the prize to enable their success.

Competitors will use innovative methods to identify DEEC-Tec components and materials that have high techno-economic potential for wave energy converters. Successful concepts developed through this prize are those that show the greatest techno-economic potential to contribute to grid-scale power systems.

Through this prize, WPTO seeks to meet the following goals:

  • Leverage innovation to systematically develop DEEC-Tec concepts that could bring value to the ocean wave energy conversion industry.
  • Build a solver community by engaging and facilitating collaboration between diverse innovators inside and outside the marine energy industry and related DEEC-Tec disciplines.
  • Encourage development of novel DEEC-Tec concepts with high potential relevant to ocean wave energy conversion by supporting an interdisciplinary set of competitors as they move from ideation to design.
  • Refine wave energy converter innovation methods to incorporate ideas from beyond the field of wave energy based on feedback from the prize.

Who Can Participate?

This prize aims to engage distributed embedded energy conversion experts from a wide variety of fields and disciplines, like piezoelectrics, polymers, and actuators. Innovators within and beyond the wave energy industry are encouraged to create and join multidisciplinary teams in designing and completing proof-of-concept testing of DEEC-Tec concept(s) that are applicable to ocean wave energy conversion.

To ensure success regardless of knowledge or background in marine energy, competitors will receive multiple types of support throughout the prize, including training in innovation methods, connections with commercialization mentors, and an introduction to marine renewable energy.

Please see the official prize rules for participant eligibility and resource materials.

Please note that phase 1 closes on 25th August!