Let’s talk University Design competition. For the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded seven universities in the southeast. That’s with the People, Prosperity and the Planet (P3) Phase I grants. All for the 2011-2012 school year.
Background on University Design Awards
Nationally, the grants were awarded to 45 teams of college and university students across the country. The teams will also design creative solutions to sustainability challenges. Especially in the developed and developing world. In addition, the P3 grants challenge students. For that’s working together on interdisciplinary teams. That’s to design and build sustainable technologies that improve quality of life. Also promote economic development and also protect the environment.
The 2011-2012 school year University Design awardees are:
- Clark Atlanta University – Designing genes for bacteria that will produce lignin-degrading enzymes in plant cell walls to more efficiently produce the renewable fuel bioethanol.
- Appalachian State University – Developing an artificial wetland suitable for recycling of graywater from small businesses for immediate reuse.
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – Creating and implementing a point-of-use disinfectant for drinking water that is cheap, non-toxic, and effective in reducing waterborne illness in developing nations.
- Vanderbilt University – Design and developing a biohybrid solar panel that substitutes a protein from spinach for rare metals (mined). In addition it’s capable of producing electrical energy.
- Embry – Riddle Aeronautical University – Designing a foldable solar power water purification system. One that can fit into a backpack for easy transport. Especially for use after a disaster affects the drinking water supply.
- Christian Brothers University – Developing technologies to improve energy efficiency in the building envelope of residences in Memphis, TN, that focus on the thermal properties of materials, fire safety, material stability, and cost.
- Valdosta State University – Developing an economical and green aquaculture process for the production of pharmaceutical agents, particularly those from the ocean.
Phase 1 Grant for Design Expo
The annual EPA P3 competition begins with Phase I grant awards of $15,000 to student teams that then work on projects in a range of categories. That’s including water and energy. Also agriculture, built environment, and materials and also chemicals. After working on the project for eight months, the teams will show them off. For they will bring their designs to the 8th Annual National Sustainable Design Expo. That’s on the National Mall in Washington, D.C around Earth Day.
At the expo, the projects will be judged by a panel of experts. A few teams will be selected for Phase II grants up to $90,000. That’s for students to improve their designs. Also implement them in the field or move them to the marketplace.
In addition, applications are being accepted through Dec. 22, 2011. That’s for the next round of Phase I awards for the 2012-2013 school year. In addition to the categories above. So teams can also propose innovative ideas. That’s for green infrastructure and designing clean cookstoves.
For more information on the P3 Phase I grant awards: http://www.epa.gov/ncer/p3/current
More information on applying for a 2012-2013 Phase I P3 award: http://www.epa.gov/ncer/p3/apply