Google and IEEE Launch the Little Box Challenge
An open competition to build a (much) smaller power inverter, with a $1,000,000 prize
22 July 2014 – IEEE today announced the launch of the Little Box Challenge, a competition presented by Google and the IEEE Power Electronics Society (IEEE PELS). The Little Box Challenge is not only a grand engineering contest but also a chance to make a big impact on the future of power electronics by designing a much smaller but higher-power density inverter.
The Little Box Challenge is designed to spur innovation that can drive a 10x or greater reduction in the size of power inverters, devices that convert electricity from direct current into alternating current. These technology advancements can lead to higher efficiency, increased reliability, and lower energy costs. For example, a smaller inverter could help create low-cost microgrids in remote parts of the world, or allow people to keep the lights on during a blackout via their electric car’s battery.
“We are very pleased to present this important initiative together with Google to encourage innovation. By participating in this challenge, members of industry and academia can play a pivotal role in a technological innovation that could have a major impact on the world,” said IEEE PELS President Don Tan.
The Little Box Challenge supports IEEE’s mission to foster technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity. As part of the competition, individuals selected by IEEE and Google will judge the submissions, technical approach, and final tests of the entrant devices and select a winner.
The competition launches today and runs through 2015. Registration is due 30 September 2014. Eligible academics may also register and apply for grants to assist in the development of their devices. For more information or to enter the Little Box Challenge, visit www.littleboxchallenge.com.