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Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup XCHALLENGE

Winning Teams

First Place Winner

ELASTEC / AMERICAN MARINE

Team Leader: Don Johnson

ELASTEC / AMERICAN MARINE

You cannot give the history of the Elastec / American Marine Team without starting at the beginnings of Elastec / American Marine. The company was started by Donnie Wilson and Jeff Cantrell. Elastec / American Marine began as any other Southern Illinois oilfield service.

Second Place Winner

NOFI

Team Leader: Dag Nilsen

NOFI

We were informed by a US customer who thought the Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup XCHALLENGE might be something that NOFI Current Buster systems would be interested in. The sky high demands for the oil recovery rate caught our interest, and although the competition seemed a tough challenge.

GRAND CHALLENGE

In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil spill raged on with no end in sight. Surface oil recovery technology hadn’t advanced in 40 years. And, though the crisis was eventually contained, we know that it is not a matter of if another spill will happen, but rather when. Clearly a paradigm shift was needed to address future crises to minimize the potential disastrous effects on our ocean, food supply and the very air we breathe.

OBJECTIVE

Demonstrate rapidly deployable, highly efficient methods for cleaning up crude oil from the ocean surface.

COMPETITION

The $1.4 M Wendy Schmidt Oil cleanup XCHALLENGE incentivized competing teams from all over the world to find innovative, effective and environmentally safe solutions for capturing oil from spills at the spill site.

PURSE PRIZE

1st Place: $1 million
2nd Place: $300,000
3rd Place: $100,000

TIMELINE

The competition launched on July 29, 2010 and awarded on October 11, 2011.

Phase I: An expert panel of judges evaluated the teams’ proposals against numerous criteria.

Phase II: 10 finalist teams demonstrated their ability to effectively and rapidly clean up oil on the ocean surface at Ohmsett, the National Oil Spill Response, Research &Renewable Energy Test Facility in New Jersey.

Phase III: Winners awarded.

Competition Results

First place $1 Million winner Elastec / American Marine with their achievement of 4670 gpm (at 89.5% efficiency), reached more than 3 times the industry’s previous best oil recovery rate tested in controlled conditions.

Second place $300,000 winner NOFI with their achievement of 2712 gpm (at 83% efficiency), reached more than two times the industry’s previous best oil recovery rate tested in controlled conditions.

Third Place will not be awarded as no third team met all of the challenging minimum targets of the competition. The XPRIZE Foundation’s competitions set targets that are on the boundary of audacious and achievable in order to inspire breakthrough innovation. The fact that, in the short timeframe of the competition’s timeline, two teams exceeded our requirements in this competition and that several other teams came very close shows that that balance was properly struck in this XCHALLENGE. We congratulate all of the Finalist teams on their efforts to achieve the audacious goals of this competition. The XPRIZE Foundation and Wendy Schmidt have agreed to redirect the $100K from the un-awarded third place prize purse to the XPRIZE Foundation’s development of future competitions that would address one of the many challenges still facing the protection of our oceans, coastlines, marine life, and coastal economies, such as oil spill cleanup.

Competing Teams

First Place Winner

ELASTEC / AMERICAN MARINE

United States

Team Leader: Don Johnson

Second Place Winner

NOFI

Norway

Team Leader: Dag Nilsen

 

Voraxial

Florida, United States

Team Leader: Laura Di Bella

 

Vor-Tek

United States

Team Leader: Ashley Day

 

PPR

United States

Team Leader: Rich Morgan

 

KOSEQ

Netherlands

Team Leader: Tom Achterberg

 

Oilshaver

Norway

Team Leader: Ingvar Huse

 

Lamor

Finland

Team Leader: Jari Ahoranta

 

Oilwhale

Finland

Team Leader: Markku Järvinen

 

Crucial

USA

Team Leader: RWally Landry

 

NOFI

Norway

Team Leader: Dag Nilsen

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