Six teams of student entrepreneurs will compete in the final two rounds of judging in the Clean Energy Prize competition at the University of Michigan on Friday. The teams with winning ideas will share $100,000 in prize money.
Gov. Rick Snyder; Mark Pinto, executive vice president of Ann Arbor fuel cell manufacturer Applied Materials Inc.; and UM President Mary Sue Coleman will address the teams, along with hundreds of UM business students and guests at the awards ceremony. Snyder and Gerard Anderson, DTE Energy president and CEO, will present the awards.
The Clean Energy Prize competition was established by DTE Energy and the University of Michigan in 2008 to encourage entrepreneurship in Michigan and the development of clean-energy technologies. The Masco Corp. Foundation and The Kresge Foundation were Clean Energy Prize founding sponsors and they continue to support the competition. Additional sponsors include UBS Investment Bank, Google, Huron River Ventures and GM Ventures.
At UM, groups involved in organizing it include the College of Engineering’s Center for Entrepreneurship, the Ross School of Business’s student organization Ross Energy Club, the Business Engagement Center, the Michigan Memorial Phoenix Energy Institute and the Office of the Vice President for Research.
The finals and award ceremony are open to the public.
The awards ceremony will be held at 2 p.m. Friday in Rackham Auditorium, 915 E. Washington St., Ann Arbor.
Teams will make their presentations at 11 a.m. Friday at the UM Alumni Center, 200 Fletcher St. The presentations are open to the public. Reporters are invited to attend to get more information about the projects.
The competition began with 23 teams from seven Michigan colleges and universities. Teams from the University of Michigan, Wayne State University and Western Michigan University will compete in the final two rounds of judging. Those teams are:
* Green Start Batteries: An eco-friendly and cost effective alternative to new batteries by renewing 7 out of 10 lead acid batteries to original manufacturing standards at one third of the cost of new batteries.
* Smart Energy Loan Fund: Providing an innovative financing model to retrofit municipal buildings for energy efficiency savings.
* CSquared Innovation: A laser-assisted atmospheric plasma deposition technology that offers a high-speed, cost-effective and highly scalable platform approach to the synthesis of nanostructured materials and films for a large area on Li-ion battery electrodes, photovoltaics, industrial coatings, and biomedical materials.
* Grid Link: A cost-effective residential demand response program to utilities by providing an end-to-end solution that includes program development, marketing, and operation.
* Impact Card: A first-of-its-kind funding mechanism that aggregates consumer credit card reward points as project financing for renewable energy development.
* Perennial BioEnergy LLC: Development of a biodiesel industry based on pennycress, non-food winter oilseed which can be integrated with summer cash crops such as corn and soybeans.