U.S. Agency Launches Prize Contest for Ideas to Prevent Corrosion of Steel

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) (Washington, DC) is opening a prize competition in search of new ideas for the long-term corrosion protection of large, hydraulic steel structures. Proposals should go beyond currently available coatings and cathodic protection techniques.

Reclamation is launching the initiative in collaboration with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Washington, DC), U.S. Navy Facilities Engineering Command (Washington, DC), and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (Gaithersburg, Maryland).

The structures for the competition include hydroelectric penstock pipes and gates that control or divert water. Submitted ideas should protect a given structure for 50 years with minimal maintenance and a low cost of installation. Ideas must be submitted by September 5, 2017.

This is the first stage of the prize competition, which seeks new or improved concepts. Only a written, detailed description of the concept needs to be submitted. If the first stage produces winning concepts, the second stage will include a larger prize purse while asking participants to present their technology and demonstrate proof-of-concept data in both lab-scale and field-scale evaluations.

Reclamation is making $75,000 available for the first stage, with up to six awards to be made for the best submissions that meet or exceed requirements. The cash awards for each winning solution will not be less than $10,000, but could be as high as $25,000, according to USBR officials.

Solvers do not need to participate in the first stage to participate in second stage, while first-phase participants also do not have to participate in the second phase.

To register and learn more about this prize competition, please click here.

Source: USBR Research and Development Office, usbr.gov/research/challenges/.