This year's The Tech Challenge: Harnessing the Wind
will see students move water to the people who need it most. In California, we spend 19% of our total energy consumption moving and processing water. In our county alone we import 55% of our water. This scarce resource travels a long way to get to our tap and climbs almost 2,000 feet over the Tehachapi Mountains to get to Los Angeles. The energy used each year is enough to power the entire city for about two months. With the topic of rain and drought frequently in the news, the 2014 design-challenge gives students the opportunity to approach a real-world problem with their creativity and ingenuity.
As we gear up for this weekend's The Tech Challenge 2014: Harnessing the Wind, let's take a look back at the last 5 design-challenges young innovators have tackled with finesse.
2013 - Asteroids Rock!
Students created a solution to safely deploy scientific instruments from a landed spacecraft to three specifics areas on an asteroid. Asteroids may contain extensive deposits of very valuable and rare minerals.
2012 - Shake, Rattle, and Rescue
Innovative minds created a solution to help earthquake survivors. After an earthquake severely damages a bridge, the device needs to reach and rescue a person stranded on the bridge.
2011 - The Great Pacific Gyre
Marine scientists asked participants to help them clean the seas. Each team designed and built a device that collected trash from the ocean without harming marine life.
2010 - International Space Station Mission: Space Junk
Each team designed and built a solution that helped get rid the Universe of Space Junk one item at a time. The mission: get an inoperative satellite to burn up upon re-entry by attaching two Hall Thrusters to its thruster docking ports.
2009 - Explore the Volcano
Students created a device that delivered a payload of up to 6 geological instruments (a/k/a ping-pong balls) to the top of the volcano in 3 minutes.
Michelle Tran is the Public Relations Specialist at The Tech Museum of Innovation