A competitive and exciting final was the first version of the Energy Innovation Challenge that AES Andes organized to bring young students from various Chilean universities closer to the development of new solutions in energy matters.
The initiative, in which 120 university students participated, making up a total of 31 teams from 10 universities, all of them made up of women and men, was aimed at students interested in knowing and learning more about the energy sector.
The eight finalist groups came from Chilean universities; Catholic; Conception; Santa María and Santiago presented their solution in person before a jury led by the CEO of AES Andes, Javier Dib, and part of his management team.
The team from the Pontifical Catholic University (PUC) called “Hidrogenios”, composed of Alexander Haddad, Carlos Cabrera, Catalina Arcilla and Cristián Rubio, obtained first place, with a project that connected green hydrogen with the value chain in mining
The students proposed the conversion of three buses to green hydrogen to transport mining workers, which implies a demand for 936 trips per year and would avoid the emission of 513 tons of CO2.
Along with thanking the high participation in the contest, the CEO of AES Andes, Javier Dib, highlighted that “we are pleasantly surprised by the level of solutions, the search for initiatives and the diversity of the teams. For us it is very valuable to have had so many students who were enthusiastic about the Energy Innovation Challenge, proposing sustainable solutions for the development and use of green hydrogen.”
“We seek to improve the state of the energy industry, achieving decarbonization in the different links of the value chain. Hydrogen is a niche, it is not something that works for everything, so we wanted to go for something that could be feasible and I think the jury could see that,” said Carlos Cabrera, member of the winning team.
The students who obtained first place and won a prize of $3,000,000, are studying civil engineering in mining, electrical and mechanical engineering.
Second place was obtained by the “Dimec GE” team from the Santa María University, who took home $2,000,000, while third place went to “Renew” from the University of Santiago, with a prize of $1,200,000.
The director of Green Hydrogen Business for South America of AES and member of the jury, Luis Sarrás, maintained that “the winning team managed to clearly identify a problem to be solved and develop a feasible solution that adds value, always considering the scale of the available resources. The way they posed the problem and its solution was clear and concise. In short, they proposed a realistic project that adds value and they communicated it efficiently.”