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Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences pres.

Nuclear Energy Grand Challenge Pitch Competition

Reimagining Nuclear Waste

Pitch Competition Pitch Competition
Pitch Competition
Nuclear power is an essential tool in the fight against climate change—producing massive amounts of energy without any greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, deploying nuclear power at scale worldwide represents the most efficient path to deep decarbonization. Despite this potential, the nuclear power industry is hindered by social, political, and economic challenges in many parts of the world. The Nuclear Energy Grand Challenge represents a series of prize competitions organized by the Energy Impact Center to spur a new approach to nuclear power deployment on a time frame that can make a difference.

The first prize competition, Reimagining Nuclear Waste, is taking place over the Fall 2019 and Winter 2020 semesters in partnership with the University of Michigan. It was designed to advance the clean energy economy by engaging collegiate innovators and entrepreneurs to tackle one of the most unique challenges facing the nuclear energy industry—the perception of nuclear waste.

The nuclear industry has historically responded to calls against its “waste” by offering solutions around concentrating, storing indefinitely, and separating it from humans, which only further—albeit counterintuitively—deepens the public’s distrust, misunderstanding, and wariness of the energy source at large. This prize competition represents the first of several efforts to flip the script on the byproducts of nuclear energy generation, by identifying new commercial opportunities to transform nuclear “waste” from a liability into an asset.

Interdisciplinary student teams were challenged to create technical business plan proposals to productize nuclear waste and incentivize the creation of new markets/uses that re-imagine how spent nuclear fuel can be utilized. At this public event, the teams will present their proposals to a panel of judges.
Pitch Competition Pitch Competition
Pitch Competition
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