Spoke with one of the teams that participated last week in the Intel+UC Berkeley Technology Entrepreneurship Challenge. Although not strictly a green technology competition, there were a number of teams focused on solving environmental issues through innovative applications of technology.
One great example was the team I interviewed, which represented AMIREco, a year-old Russian venture that has developed a phosphate material that can be used to remove oil from soil or from other materials.
Igor Rozhdestvensky, senior partner of the venture from St. Petersburg, says the company recently earned a contract to test its idea at a site in Russia in conjunction with a large Russian company in his company's target customer demographic. Rozhdestvensky and several other AMIREco partners traveled to the challenge event in order to gather ideas for how to develop and market their idea, as well as how to produce it in scale and not just small test batches. "Intel gave us an excellent course on entrepreneurship," he says.
They also walked away from the event with some suggestions about how to overcome certain potential challenges with the materials, says the company's research and development manager Oleg Rozhdestvensky.
Two other green-techie ideas represented during the competition were Treems from Technical University Munich, which is pitching a way of identifying, selling and managed protected trees or other forestry resources, and the New Green team from Shanghai, which was pitching cards (sort of like the ph tests you would do on the pool in your backyard) for detecting the presence of pesticides and bacterias in Chinese food products.
Here's a link to more information about the winner of the challenge, a Chinese student development team called Ihealth that is working on biodegradable bone screws. The team was awarded $25,000 by Intel to help fund it idea. Here's a list of all the teams that participated.