Category Archives: Contests & Competitions

Shell Eco-Marathon 2015

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When: April 9-12, 2015
Registration deadline: Nov. 17, 2014 (for the Americas competition)
Where: Downtown Detroit, Michigan
Level: High school, technical school, and college students

Could your school design and build a car capable of  squeezing 2,824 miles from a single gallon of gas?

That’s the impressive milestone achieved by a fuel-efficient vehicle developed by students from the University of Laval in Québec, Canada, in the 2014 Shell Eco-marathon Americas. The car was one of 120 in the competition, which drew more than 1,200 high school and university students from Brazil, Canada, Guatemala, Mexico.

Created to spur innovation, the global event challenges student teams to choose from a variety of fuel sources and develop game-changing solutions by competing to see who can travel the farthest distance using the least amount of energy. Participants receive travel stipends, with winners taking home cash prizes.

Teams can compete in one or both categories: Prototype (futuristic designs) and UrbanConcept (roadworthy, fuel-efficient vehicles).

The Prototype class focuses on maximizing fuel efficiency through innovative design elements, such as drag reduction. The UrbanConcept class aims to meet the real-life needs of drivers and are closer in appearance to the higher-mileage cars seen on roads today. For both vehicle classes, teams can use diesel, gasoline, ethanol, FAME, and hydrogen and battery electric technologies.

Click here to register today or contact Shell Eco-marathon’s organizers with questions. Check out the videos from last year’s competition and visit the website for additional information.

Lemelson-MIT Program

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The Lemelson-MIT National Collegiate Student Prize Competition honors promising collegiate inventors around the country, undergraduate and graduate, who have inventions in either the categories of healthcare or consumer technology. Inventions can address issues in both developing and developed economies.

Undergraduate teams can win up to $10,000 and graduates can win up to $15,000. Applications are open for the 2015 year and are due by January 30, 2015.

Touch of Genius Prize


The Touch of Genius Prize for Innovation is a $20,000 prize that recognizes software, apps, educational tools, or games that promote braille learning or braille-related hardware. The prize is offered through the National Braille Press and the Gibney Family Foundation, and attracts participants from around the world in fields such as education, technology, engineering, and general literacy.

Stay tuned to the National Braille Press website for details on the 2015 competition. Although applications have not yet been released, the deadline for registration is expected to be January 7, 2015.

Hopkins Students are Finalists in $10 Million Qualcomm Contest

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Nineteen Johns Hopkins University undergraduates, most of them engineering students, make up the only undergraduate team that was selected to compete in the final round of Qualcomm’s Tricorder XPRIZE international competition. The team, called Aezon Health, first started competing in 2012  to develop consumer-friendly “tricorders,” reminiscent of a gadget used by Dr. Leonard McCoy in Star Trek, that can diagnose 15 different conditions from a patient’s vital signs. The device can weigh no more than five pounds.

Aezon’s device, according to JHU Engineering, can scan for illnesses like strep throat and urinary tract infections, and includes a smartphone app and cloud database to store test results for later use.  The device could alleviate problems of access to basic healthcare screenings that many areas of the world suffer from.

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