The American-Made Solar Prize is designed to strengthen and scale critical connections that accelerate and sustain American solar innovation through a series of prize competitions and the development of the American-Made Challenges Network.
scroll for more
$3 million in cash prizes and $525,000 in vouchers
Accelerates the development of technologies and solutions that will advance the solar industry
Enables rapid prototyping of ground-breaking solar solutions and proves their viability
Provides connections to a network of solar industry experts, fabricators, and developers
Connects entrepreneurs with the investor community to help solar businesses and technical solutions scale
accelerate the exchange of ideas
Your ideas can promote innovation!
ideation runs throughout the duration of the program
Incubate your ideas and products to pave a successful path forward
20 - 40 winners
win up to $50,000 cash
Create proof-of-concepts and ideas for working prototypes
5 - 10 winners
win up to $200,000 cash
win up to $75,000 in vouchers
partner to pilot
Secure a partner to advance your prototypes and develop a pilot project
win up to $500,000 cash
win up to $75,000 in vouchers
Join the researchers, scientists, industry experts, thought leaders, and citizens who are leveraging crowd sourcing to harness their collective knowledge in identifying industry-relevant problems and/or solutions in the U.S. solar energy market!
Submit your ideas or problems to see what others in the community think. Your submission may be the inspiration to a revolutionary innovation!
Ideation will be open soon!
90 days / 20 - 40 winners / win up to $50,000 cash
Competitors will demonstrate they have identified, and taken action to develop an impactful idea or solution that will address a critical need for the solar industry. They will also plan their proposed path to development of a proof of concept. Winners will receive up to $50,000 in cash and will then be eligible to compete in the Set Contest and the Go Contest.
Anyone can submit a package to compete in the Ready Contest. Submissions will be evaluated by a panel of expert judges from industry, national labs, and government. Winners of the Ready Contest will then be eligible to compete in the Set Contest by further developing their idea into a viable and promising proof of concept.
90 days / 5 - 10 winners / win up to $200,000 cash / win up to $75,000 in vouchers
This contest will begin upon completion of the Ready Contest
Competitors will work to substantially advance their technology solution towards a viable and promising proof of concept. They must show that not only will their proof of concept solve an important problem in the solar industry, but will also have significant demand, if the concept comes to market. It is also expected that competitors will make significant progress towards developing a mechanism to validate and pilot test their solution. Winners will receive up to $200,000 in cash and up to $75,000 in vouchers that may be redeemed at national labs and fabrication facilities to further develop their solution.
Winners of the Set Contest will be selected by a panel of judges during a national “demo day” event. Winners of the Set Contest are eligible to compete in the final Go Contest.
90 days / 2 winners / win up to $500,000 cash / win up to $75,000 in vouchers
This contest will begin upon completion of the Set Contest
Competitors work to substantially advance their solution from proof of concept to a refined prototype and find a partner to perform a pilot test the prototype solution. Winners will receive up to $500,000 in cash and up to $75,000 in vouchers redeemable at national labs and qualified fabrication facilities.
Go Contest overall contest winners will again be chosen by a panel of judges after participating a live “demo day” event.
The progression of three contests offers a total of $3 million in cash prizes and $525,000 in vouchers
The American-Made Challenges Network will cultivate resources and build connections that enhance, accelerate, and amplify the efforts of the competitors. The objective is to link competitors with ideas, people, resources, financing, and relevant industry expertise, all of which are necessary for long-term success.
The American-Made Solar Prize is designed to strengthen and scale critical connections that accelerate and sustain American solar innovation through a series of prize competitions and the development of the American-Made Challenges Network. The program will make it faster and easier for our nation’s entrepreneurs to transform leading-edge research and ideas into early-stage product concepts and prototypes ready for validation and pilot testing.
Voucher funding encourages the development of new and productive relationships that can rapidly produce, improve, or validate prototypes.
Facility voucher funding will be issued to winning Competitors to support the development of new and productive relationships that can rapidly produce, improve, or validate prototypes. National laboratories and qualified facilities are invited to sign up for notifications of voucher partnering opportunities.
We welcome all those with ideas to participate, whether individually, as a team, a university student or professor, or a national laboratory researcher or any other U.S.-based entity. DOE is seeking participation from anyone that has the desire and the motivation to transform a conceptual solution into reality.