What is an efficient building without efficient appliances? That’s the question students must face as part of the Energy Department’s Max Tech and Beyond competition. This program challenges university students to design highly efficient, next-generation appliances and commercial equipment.
Helping American consumers and businesses save money by saving energy is a major part of the Obama administration's all-of-the-above energy strategy. Challenging America's students to find energy saving solutions is one of the ways the Energy Department is working to bring the best and brightest to the challenge of saving energy.
Initiated in 2010, organizers of the Max Tech competition first began by ranking the energy saving potential of appliances and commercial equipment to identify the appliances that had the most potential for technological advancement. Then in June 2011, organizers sent a request for proposals to university engineering and science departments across the nation -- asking students to develop new, next generation appliance and commercial equipment designs that demonstrate high energy savings.
A panel of experts reviewed the proposals and funded the following nine projects:
- California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo: Hybrid Solar Photovoltaic Panel for Pool Heating
- California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo: Inexpensive Tracking Solar Concentrator
- Cornell University: Full Spectrum LED Lighting
- Marquette University: A Hybrid Desiccant Dehumidification System
- Ohio State University: Energy Efficient, Hybrid Air/Water Conditioning Appliance
- Santa Clara University: Reduction of Energy Use in Clothes Dryers
- Santa Clara University: Efficient Lighting System via Automated Control of Blind Angle and LED Light Bulbs
- Texas A&M University: Advanced Controls for Ultra-Efficient Supermarket Refrigeration Systems
- University of Maryland: Separate Sensible and Latent Cooling System
The teams received up to $20,000 to implement their proposals over the course of the 2011/2012 academic year and have been busy working on their designs and analyzing potential energy savings. Join us on May 23rd via webinar to see each student team present their innovative technological designs and demonstrate their energy savings.
Winners of the competition will be announced later this summer, so stay tuned to Energy.gov for more updates and announcements. We are very eager to see what these teams come up with!
The Max Tech and Beyond competition is funded by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. To learn more, visit maxtechandbeyond.lbl.gov.