Little Box Challenge

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The Little Box Challenge was an engineering competition run by Google and the IEEE's Power Electronics Society.[1][2] The original challenge was posted on July 22, 2014 with modifications on December 16, 2014 and March 23, 2015.[3] Testing was in October 2015 at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. From the 18 finalists, CE+T Power's team called Red Electrical Devils won the $1 million prize, which was awarded to them in March 2016.[4]

The challenge was to build a power inverter that was about one tenth the size of the state-of-the-art at the time. It had to have an efficiency greater than 95 percent and handle loads of 2 kW. It also had to fit in a metal enclosure of no more than 40 cubic inches (the eponymous "little box") and withstand 100 hours of testing.[3]

The goals of the competition were lower cost solar photovoltaic power, more efficient uninterruptible power supplies, affordable microgrids, and the ability to use an electric vehicle's battery as backup power during a power outage. Google also hoped a smaller inverter could make its data centers run more efficiently.[1]

The organization of the Challenge was highly flawed, with the organizers very difficult to contact; in particular, key parts of the specification were modified within weeks of the first deadline. The selected finalists had only a few weeks to modify or redo their design for the finals in October. Also, one cannot help remark that the reception of the finalists was particularly stingy: at the end of the day the 15 finalist teams, who had flown to Denver at their own expense for the event, were handed a list of recommended Denver restaurants, and told to enjoy themselves.

The Red Electrical Devils[edit]

(CE+T Power, Belgium)[edit]

Olivier Bomboir, Paul Bleus, Fabrice Frebel, Thierry Joannès, François Milstein, Pierre Stassain, Christophe Geuzaine, Carl Emmerechts, Philippe Laurent


Schneider Electric Team[edit]

(France)[edit]

Miao-xin Wang, Rajesh Ghosh, Srikanth Mudiyula, Radoslava Mitova, David Reilly, Milind Dighrasker, Sajeesh Sulaiman, Alain Dentella, Damir Klikic, Chandrashekar Devalapuraramegowda, Michael Hartmann, Vijaykumar Atadkar


Future Energy Electronics Center[edit]

(VirginiaTech, USA)[edit]

Jih-Sheng Lai, Lanhua Zhang, Xiaonan Zhao, Rachael Born, Chung-Yi Lin, Ming-Chang Chou, Shu-Shuo Chang, Kye Yak See

Remaining Finalists[edit]

!verter[edit]

(Germany/Switzerland)[edit]

Eckart Hoene, Johann W. Kolar, Dominik Bortis, Yanick Lobsiger, Dominik Neumayr, Oliver Knecht, Florian Krismer, Stefan Hoffmann, Adam Kuczmik, Oleg Zeiter, Franc Zajc

[1] Final project presentation

Adiabatic Logic[edit]

(UK)[edit]

Geoff Harvey, Alan Walbridge, Steve Love

AHED[edit]

(Germany)[edit]

Alexander Huenten

AMR[edit]

(Argentina)[edit]

Agustin Reibel

Cambridge Active Magnetics[edit]

(UK)[edit]

John Wood, Ed Shelton, Tim Regan, Ellen Wood, Kyle Rogers, Dr Kevin Rathbone, Sam Harrup

Energylayer[edit]

(Ukraine)[edit]

Evgeny Sboychakov, Ruslan Kotelnikov

Fraunhofer IISB[edit]

(Germany)[edit]

Bernd Eckardt, Stefan Endres, Maximilian Hofmann, Stefan Matlok, Thomas Menrath, Martin März, Stefan Zeltner

Helios[edit]

(USA)[edit]

Jack Zhu, Mari Ma

LBC1[edit]

(Slovakia)[edit]

Martin Pietka, Andrej Teren, Marian Vranka, Lubos Drozd, Peter Sedlacko

OKE-Services[edit]

(Netherlands)[edit]

Henk Oldenkamp

Rompower[edit]

(USA/Romania)[edit]

Ionel Jitaru, Nicolae Daniel Bolohan, Antonio Marco Davila

The University of Tennessee[edit]

(USA)[edit]

Daniel Costinett, Leon Tolbert, Fred Wang, Chongwen Zhao, Bradford Trento, Ling Jiang, Rick Langley, John Jansen, Reid Kress, Anthony Brun

Tommasi - Bailly 3NERGY[edit]

(France)[edit]

Mike Tommasi, Alain Bailly Technical Approach

UIUC Pilawa Group[edit]

(USA)[edit]

Robert Pilawa, Shibin Qin, Christopher Barth, Yutian Lei, Wen-Chuen Liu, Andrew Stillwell, Intae Moon, Derek Chou, Thomas Foulkes

Venderbosch[edit]

(Netherlands)[edit]

Herbert Venderbosch, Gerard Bruggink

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Tweed, Katherine (2014-07-30). "Winning Google's Little Box Challenge Will Take a 'Holistic Approach'". IEEE Spectrum. Retrieved 2016-03-26.
  2. ^ Stockton, Nick (2014-08-11). "What It Will Take to Win Google's Million-Dollar Electric Power Prize". WIRED. Retrieved 2016-03-26.
  3. ^ a b Detailed Inverter Specifications, Testing Procedure, and Technical Approach and Testing Application Requirements for the Little Box Challenge Archived 2016-03-10 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Russell, Kristen (2016-03-09). "The IEEE Power Electronics Society and Google Announce Winner of Little Box Challenge". IEEE Society Sentinel, Vol. 21, No. 05. Retrieved 2016-03-26. the grand prize winner of the $1 Million Little Box Challenge is CE+T Power's Red Electrical Devils

See also[edit]

External links[edit]