About the Prize

What is the duration of this competition?

The Global Cooling Prize will run for a period of 2 years starting November 12, 2018. The top ten finalists will be announced around November 2019 and interim awards of up to $2 million will be awarded to them for development of the prototypes of their cooling technology. The final winner or winners will be announced around November 2020. More information can be found on the Timelines & Milestones page of the website.  

Who can participate in the Prize?

We are seeking submissions from incumbent cooling technology providers, emerging innovators in space cooling and similar technologies, as well as professors, students, and researchers from universities and laboratories around the world. Anyone with a great idea can apply for the prize.

Can we participate in the Global Cooling Prize as a consortium of two or more organizations?

Yes, a team comprising of multiple member organizations is allowed to participate in the prize. This allows individual component manufacturers to team up, combine their expertise and come up with the cooling technology. However, we do request you to identify as one team with one team leader for correspondence purposes.

Can one team submit more than one application?

We will accept only one application per team. Only the team leader of your team can submit the application so if you want to submit additional ideas, please start a new application with a different team leader to propose those new designs through the application process. Please do not submit the same design twice as they will not be considered.

Can I add more members to my team profile within the applicant portal?

No, you cannot add more team members to your team on the applicant portal. The team leader can share his/her login credentials with the team so everyone on the team can access the portal but through one login. In the case that two teams merge into one, we request the team leaders of these teams to create a new team and decide on a new team leader for registering with the prize.

Will Global Cooling Prize share my personal details with others?

The Global Cooling Prize coalition shall not disclose or convey your personal information to third parties, except to its entrusted agencies for purposes related to this prize. The participant will be contacted for permissions ahead of time if the coalition intends to feature the participant for branding and marketing purposes.

How can I partner with the Global Cooling Prize?

If you want to increase the reach and impact of this prize or want to directly support teams with resources and expertise, or you are interested in becoming a partner, please share with us how you would like to be part of this journey. More information can be found on the Get Involved page of the website.

What kind of support will participants get from the Global Cooling Prize coalition?

Participants will get support from a network of global experts in both technical and nontechnical areas, including prototype development, business model development, market entry strategies, practicing business pitches, and raising investment.

What is the prize purse?

The total prize purse of the competition is USD 3 million. The top ten finalists selected on the basis of their technical proposal submission will be awarded a prize money of USD 200,000 each for development and shipping of their two prototype models to India. The final winner will receive the grand prize of USD 1 million.

Apply for the Prize

When does the prize portal start accepting applications for participating in the prize?

You can apply for the prize by registering here.

When is the last date to apply to the prize?

The last date to apply to participate in the prize is on June 30, 2019. Applications after this date will not be accepted.

Is there any registration fee required to participate in the Global Cooling Prize?

No fees will be charged to participate in or apply to the Prize.

What is the next step after I have registered?

After you have successfully registered, you are required to complete and submit the “Participant Intent to Apply” form to showcase your interest in the Prize. This form must be submitted on or before June 30, 2019. The form can be accessed after successful registration.

Application Process

What is the purpose of the Participant Intent to Apply form?

The Participant Intent to Apply form is the first phase of the Global Cooling Prize competition. The form requires the participants to provide sufficient information about their team and cooling solution to showcase their intent to participate in the Global Cooling Prize.

What documents are required as part of the Participant Intent to Apply form?

No documents are required as part of this initial form. The participants are required to fill an online form by providing information about their team and proposed cooling solution.

Can I submit the Participant Intent to Apply form more than once?

The Participant Intent to Apply form can be submitted only once. The form can be saved at any step and allows the participant to resume the work at any time. However, once submitted, the form cannot be edited and will be available in view only mode.

What is the purpose of having Participant Intent to Apply form and Detailed Technical Application?

The Participant Intent to Apply form is a non-evaluation submission meant to gauge the interest of the participant and to know about the team and the cooling technology. The Detailed Technical Application, on the other hand, expects the participant to provide comprehensive information about the innovative cooling technology along with a detailed schematic, design calculations, technical drawings, showcasing the achievement of the Prize Criteria. This will be evaluated by the Technical Review Committee and selection of top 10 finalists will be made.

What is the next step after I have submitted the Intent to Apply form?

After you have submitted the Intent to Apply form, the next step is to submit the Detailed Technical Application form. This form should be submitted on or before August 31, 2019.

What happens after I have submitted the Detailed Technical Application?

After you have submitted the Detailed Technical Application, the technical review committee will evaluate your application. All applications will be assessed based on the completeness and details provided against each requirement to help the technical review committee assess the technology’s performance as per the prize criteria. The Technical Review Committee may ask the prize organizers to contact the participant for additional information or clarifying questions if necessary. Post evaluation of the submitted application, up to 10 finalists will be shortlisted and given prize awards towards prototype development of their ideas.

Can I request re-evaluation of my application if I am not selected or do not win?

No, all the applications will be evaluated by the Technical Review Committee based on a common evaluation criteria and the decision of this Committee in selecting the top 10 participants will be considered final and not subject to any appeal or arbitration.

Applicant Portal

Will the participant profile be visible to others applying to the Prize?

On registering with the Global Cooling Prize, the default settings will keep the participant profile hidden from others. If the participant wants to make the profile public, it can be done by modifying the Profile Privacy section under the Settings page.

Can I message people for potential partnerships in the applicant portal?

The participant can search for and send personalized messages to other applicants only if the profile privacy settings have been updated to include their names in the directory.

Technical Evaluation

What is the baseline unit for the competition?

The baseline unit for this prize is a 1.5 ton of refrigeration (TR), fixed speed, EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio) 3.5 W/W split air conditioner unit. The baseline unit uses a refrigerant R410A with a global warming potential (GWP) of 2088.

What will it take to win the Global Cooling Prize competition?

The Prize Criteria of the Global Cooling Prize has two components: Primary Criteria and Supplementary Criteria. The “Primary Criteria” includes demonstrating the 5x Climate Impact and Affordability Criteria. The “Supplementary Criteria” includes the limitations on refrigerants, water, full-load power consumption, materials and operational requirements that any cooling solution should overcome in order to qualify for the competition. Ultimately, the final winner will be selected with primary regard to the ranking of the climate impact criteria combined with the affordability criteria with a 71.5 and 28.5 weighting applied respectively, reflecting the Prize’s objective of identifying a solution with 5x less climate impact at no more than 2x the cost of today’s standard AC units to consumers.

What is the meaning of 5X less climate impact?

The 5X in the Global Cooling Prize implies that the cooling solution must achieve at least five times or 80% lower climate impact compared to the climate impact of the baseline unit. The climate impact is evaluated through the combination of reduction in grid electricity consumption (kWh) and the use of low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerant. The 80%-20% weighting is used for electricity and refrigerant performance respectively, to arrive at the overall climate impact of the cooling solution.

Can renewable energy be used to meet the 5x goal?

Renewable energy harvested by the device may be used, subject to the following criteria:

  • Any renewable energy generation equipment used must be directly integrated into the cooling unit.
  • The energy offset is accounted for only if it is used directly by the cooling equipment (net metering is not accounted for).
  • The renewable energy component combined with the AC unit must not exceed the maximum size outlined under the scalability criteria.

What does industrial scale mean for the cost assessment criteria? What is the manufacturing volume at which the cost of the prototype air conditioner will be assessed as part of the criteria?

The proposed prototype’s assessed first cost will be evaluated at industrial scale of 100,000 (hundred thousand) units by an industrial engineering expert using the Bill of Materials (BoM) and other documentation submitted as part of the detailed technical application. The industrial engineer will use the information to arrive at the manufacturing cost estimates for the product line at an assumed manufacturing scale of 100,000 units. The standard distribution costs and margins will then be added to this cost and the final cost to the consumer will be determined (excluding taxes). This final cost to the consumer should be less than 2x the baseline unit’s cost to the consumer.

Will the cost assessment criteria consider local financing or policy incentives or mechanisms such as discounts, rebates, bulk procurement, on-bill financing?

No. The cost evaluation will not take into consideration any financing mechanism or incentives available in the market. Our assessment will be purely based on the bill of materials and other relevant information shared with us through the application which will then be evaluated by an independent third-party industrial engineer.

Who are the judges for the Global Cooling Prize?

The Technical Review Committee will be the judges of the Prize and will be responsible for setting the technical criteria, reviewing applications, and selecting the finalists and winning solution. All decisions of the technical review committee will be considered final and not subject to any appeal or arbitration.

Testing Protocol

How much time will be given to develop the prototype units?

After the top 10 finalists are selected based on their detailed technical applications, each will be awarded an interim prize money of US $200,000 to support the development of two prototypes. The total duration for developing the two prototypes will be about six months.

During field test, will the technologies be tested under similar weather conditions?

Yes, all the selected technologies and the baseline unit will be installed and tested in materially identical apartments within the same time period to ensure similar weather conditions during testing.

How will I ensure that my prototype is properly installed and commissioned during testing?

During the lab and real-world test, we encourage representatives from each of the 10 selected finalists to support the Global Cooling Prize testing team in installation of their technology. The role of the representatives is to ensure that their technology is properly installed during the testing phase. Post commissioning, however, any involvement in the operation or maintenance of the prototype will not be allowed for the entire duration of the test period.

Will the travel costs of the representative be reimbursed by the Global Cooling Prize organizers?

No, the selected finalists have to use a portion of the interim prize money of US $200,000 to fund the travel and support any other cost of their representatives during the testing stage.

Intellectual Property

How is intellectual property treated during the Global Cooling Prize?

Participants in the Global Cooling Prize will be developing novel inventions or designs that may constitute IP that should be appropriately protected. The GCP’s approach to IP is as follows:

  • All participants entering the competition will do so at their risk and will be solely responsible for ensuring that they have taken appropriate steps to protect any IP that forms part of their application.
  • All participants will be encouraged to review their applications with a patent attorney and submit provisional applications where appropriate.
  • Participants should be aware that their applications for the GCP containing technical details of their innovations would likely constitute a public disclosure of their invention/design, and could vitiate their ability to subsequently secure patent/design rights. It is, therefore, imperative that participants understand the risks and take all necessary steps to prevent any adverse impact of their submissions to the GCP.
  • All individuals serving on the committees and councils and all third parties that have access to GCP technical participant applications and plans will be required to sign/execute confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements when accepting their role with the requisite committee or council.
  • GCP members do not make any representation or warranty regarding the treatment or confidentiality of any submissions received and disclaim all responsibility for the protection of participant IP, or any consequence resulting from participant submissions.
  • The GCP will not provide IP advice directly to participants but will provide access to an India patent attorney during the launch event and one webinar in early 2019. Any additional support required would need to be separately procured by the participants.
  • Participants selected for interim awards and subsequent prototype testing that have not secured the protection provided by a provisional patent application or granted patent  will also be required to sign waiver agreements absolving GCP members from liability due to the increased exposure of technology through the real world testing process in order to receive their award.
  • If you would like more information on Intellectual Property, click here.