The Program: US Department of Energy’s the EnergyTech University Prize (EnergyTech Up) Business Plan Competition

Who Is Eligible: Undergraduate students and graduate students still enrolled in classes

What Can You Win: Total of $250,000 in cash prizes

Deadline: January 31, 2022

Items Needed to Submit by Jan. 31: a 200-word summary of the technology to be leveraged and the business opportunity, along with an initial slide deck

How to Submit: All teams must register on HeroX

The University of Kentucky has been selected to serve as a regional convenor for the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) national EnergyTech University Prize competition.

Sponsored by DOE’s Office of Technology Transitions (OTT), the EnergyTech University Prize (EnergyTech UP) is a collegiate competition challenging multidisciplinary student teams to develop and present a business plan that leverages laboratory-developed and other high-potential energy technologies. EnergyTech UP awards cash prizes to teams that successfully identify an energy technology, assess its market potential, and propose a strategy for commercialization.

Student teams will compete for a total of $250,000 in cash prizes. Throughout the competition, they receive mentorship and materials to help them succeed.

The top teams will compete for a share of $100,000 in prizes funded by OTT. In addition, six DOE Technology Offices are offering up to $25,000 each in bonus prizes for the best teams in their respective fields. The six offices include: the Geothermal Technologies Office, Solar Energy Technologies Office, Office of Nuclear Energy, Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management, Building Technologies Office, and the Water Power Technologies Office.

UK will be serving as a regional convener for the Appalachia region, which includes Kentucky and Tennessee. Participating teams can learn more about the competition and register here. All teams must register on HeroX, the official competition platform, by 5 p.m. January 31, 2022.

Interested teams must submit a 200-word summary of the technology to be leveraged and the business opportunity, along with an initial slide deck, and indicate their region of choice. Teams will be invited to present at a regional convener event. Undergraduate and graduate students are eligible to compete for the EnergyTech UP prize.

Regional winners will be provided exclusive mentorship and free access to OTT’s Energy I-Corps curriculum to help students refine their ideas throughout February and March. Regional winners will pitch their complete business plan at Carnegie Mellon University Energy Week in March 2022.

If you are interested in learning more about EnergyTech UP, please contact Dave Melanson, University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research, at

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