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Home Fluid System Challenge

How can you use fluid systems components to create a product for homeowners that will dramatically outperform existing technologies? Read Overview...
Overview

Design fluid systems for the future that last for the future.

The last few decades have seen amazing advances in materials and technologies. However, many homeowners are still frustrated with their furnace, plumbing, kitchen appliances and other fluid system products. High quality, stainless steel fluid system components are commonly used in an industrial setting...but what could be possible if we brought these components to the consumer market?

Consumer fluid systems of tomorrow could:

  • Use less water, less fuel, less electricity.
  • Perform better, be smaller, and quieter.
  • Last longer and avoid the unnecessary time, money, and stress of repairing a poorly performing product.
  • Be designed so that outdated components or software can be easily replaced, updated, refurbished, or recycled. 

The catch? Most consumers will only go to the trouble of replacing old technology with new technology if the new product is in some way dramatically better than the old…if it will save them enough money in one to five years to pay for the upfront costs…and if they can trust that they will not be replacing it over again in a few years. 

What are fluid systems? Fluid systems heat, cool, pressurize, purify, produce energy, or in some other way manage a liquid or gas using fluidic components such as (but not limited to) valves, tubing, filters, regulators, and fittings.

 

What are we looking for?

We need your help in identifying products in the home that could be improved or created using a simple assembly of fluid system components. Read the complete Challenge Guidelines...

 

This challenge is of interest to an international manufacturer and distributor of industrial-grade, stainless steel fluid system components.

Guidelines

Guidelines updated August 25, 2017.

This challenge is of interest to an international manufacturer and distributor of industrial-grade, stainless steel fluid system components. We’re looking for new and creative ways to assemble standard fluid system components to solve a problem that exists in an industrial environment.

 

What are we looking for?

We need your help in identifying products in the home that could be improved using a simple assembly of fluid system components OR a brand new product that is created by a simple assembly of fluid system components.

 

Target consumer

  • You are designing a product (i.e., an assembly of fluid system components) that will appeal to millions of homeowners in the United States.
  • There is a significant segment of homeowners that are not satisfied with the quality of products available to them and are willing to pay for products that will last a lifetime. These are the homeowners your product should target.
  • Consider the products that you already use in your home. How can you make them better?

 

What is a fluid system product and how are they used in the home?

A product that heats, cool pressurizes, purifies, produces energy, or in some other way manages a liquid or gas using fluidic components, such as (but not limited to) valves, fittings, hoses, regulators, and pressure measurement gauges. See the list of eligible fluid system components below.

Learn more about how fluid system components are commonly used in homes here.

 

Eligible Fluid System Components

Your assembly design must contain primarily high-quality, stainless steel fluidic components in a size of 2” or less. We recommend you choose primarily from stainless steel components manufactured by TylokSwagelok, Hy-Lok or Ham-Let. Components from these websites must comprise a significant amount of the total value of your design and be integral to the design. These websites will provide pricing with a simple registration. 

  • Tube Fittings are components that connect to tubing.
  • Valves regulate, direct or control the flow of a liquid or gas by opening, closing, or partially obstructing various passageways.
  • Check and Relief Valves prevent the flow of a liquid or gas in one direction or relieve the pressure.
  • Regulators provide reliable pressure control.
  • Quick Connects are an easy way to connect and disconnect fluid lines.
  • Measurement devices such as gauges, flow sensors, and thermometers
  • Tubing can be made in a wide range of sizes, forms, and alloys and other materials such as stainless steel, nylon, and rubber.
  • Filters allow you to filter your liquids and gasses, preventing pump contamination and damage.
  • Hoses are used to accommodate movement or vibration in a fluid system.

Your assembly design should contain standard products wherever possible. It should not contain newly invented components.

 

Judging Criteria & Scorecard

The judging panel will rank qualified submissions according to the criteria described below. Judges may contact individuals or teams to request further information and clarification. All judging is up to the judging panel’s discretion, whose decision is final and binding.

Criteria

Description

% Importance

Fluid system components

Your product design must contain primarily high-quality, stainless steel fluidic components in a size of 2” or less. We recommend you choose primarily from the components manufactured by Tylok, Swagelok, Hy-Lok, Ham-Let or Wika. Components from these websites must comprise a significant amount of the total value of your product and be integral to the design. Some of these websites will provide pricing with a simple registration.

25

Cost of the Product

The cost of all components must be at least $250 USD resulting in a selling price of over $500 USD, assuming the selling price is twice the cost of materials.

15

Ease of assembly

Simple assembly of fluid system components from with minimal manufacturing. Product can be built and shipped in a box

15

Ease of use

Minimal to no installation or upkeep required

15

Homeowner need & appeal

Solves a problem experienced by the average homeowner

15

The viability of successful commercialization in the U.S.

Solves a problem for a large target market with substantial benefits over competing products.

15

 Challenge Structure

Preliminary Concept - Up to 3 prizes of $1000 each

  • WHAT: Submit your preliminary concept for feedback and review by the evaluation panel. Ensure your idea has merit before developing it further.
  • WHEN: Submit as soon as you’re ready. The first 3 submissions worthy of continuing into the final design will receive prizes. Feedback will be provided within 14 days of submission.
  • SUBMISSION DOCUMENT: Download here. (click File > Download As)

 

Final Design - Up to 2 prizes of $23,000 each

  • WHAT: Submit your final design for consideration by the evaluation panel. You do not need to submit your preliminary concept in order to enter a final design.
  • WHEN: Submissions are due by October 19th, 2017 at 4:59 pm ET. See the complete timeline here.
  • SUBMISSION DOCUMENT: Download here. (click File > Download As)

Bonus Prize - Up to 10 prizes of $100 each

Tell us in the forum about a product in your home that you are frustrated with and could be improved using the eligible fluid system components. You do not need to propose a design.

 

What do I need to include in my submission?

Preliminary Concept Submission Document (click File > Download As)

Final Design Submission Document (click File > Download As)

 

Additional Rules

Participation Eligibility:

The challenge is open to all adult individuals, private teams, public teams, and collegiate teams. Teams may originate from any country. Submissions must be made in English. All challenge-related communication will be in English.

No specific qualifications or expertise are required. Challenge organizers encourage multi-disciplinary and/or non-expert teams to compete and propose new solutions.

To be eligible to compete, you must comply with all the terms of the challenge as defined in the Challenge-Specific Agreement, which will be provided upon registration.

Registration and Submissions:

Submissions must be made online (only), via upload to the HeroX.com website, on or before dates noted in the Timeline. All uploads must meet the criteria outlined in the Submission Requirements guidelines. No late submissions will be accepted.

Additional Information:

  • By participating in the Challenge, each competitor agrees to submit only their original idea. Any indication of "copying" amongst competitors is grounds for disqualification.
  • All applications will go through a process of due diligence; any application found to be misrepresentative, plagiarized, or sharing an idea that is not their own will be automatically disqualified.
  • All ineligible applicants will be automatically removed from the competition with no recourse or reimbursement.
  • No purchase or payment of any kind is necessary to enter or win the competition.
  • Void wherever restricted or prohibited by law.
Timeline
Forum 6
Community 180
Fluid Systems