Challenge Terms and Conditions

Solar in your Community - Teams

Challenge Terms and Conditions

Terms and Conditions

The Challenge is open only to: (a) citizens or permanent residents of the United States; and (b) private or non-federal public entities, such as townships, tribes, corporations, or other organizations that are incorporated in and maintain a primary place of business in the United States. DOE employees, employees of sponsoring organizations, members of their immediate families (spouses, children, siblings, parents), and persons living in the same household as such persons, whether or not related, are not eligible to participate in this competition. Federal entities and federal employees, acting within the scope of their employment, are also not eligible to participate in any portion of this competition.

Applicants planning to participate as part of a team must meet the following qualifying requirements:

A team must have a single legal entity representing the entire team. This entity shall be designated the Team Lead. The Team Lead is responsible for complying with all rules of this competition including coordinating with its team members, resolving any conflicts, working with DOE and its prize administrator, participating according to the governing guidelines of the Marketplace, responsibly allocating resources, submitting all required materials throughout the competition, and complying with all guidance and restrictions, including restrictions around intellectual property.

For program-focused teams only, the Team Lead should be an electric utility, an electric co-operative, municipal power company, a financial institution, or a state, local or tribal government entity.

The Team Lead must either meet the following requirements or designate a team member that can receive payments that are legally made from the U.S. in U.S. dollars.

Each team member must be either: (a) citizens or permanent residents of the United States; (b) a legal entity established pursuant to U.S. federal or state laws, with operations in the U.S. or its territories; (c) a foreign legal entity having an officially recognized place of business in the U.S. or its territories.

All terms and conditions listed in General Submission Requirements & Eligibility Terms (listed below).


General Submission Requirements & Eligibility Terms


The content of all submissions have to meet the following requirements:

  • No DOE logo - submission(s) must not use DOE's logo or official seal and must not claim DOE endorsement.

    • Each submission must be original, the work of the participant, and must not infringe, misappropriate, or otherwise violate any intellectual property rights, privacy rights, or any other rights of any person or entity.

    • It is an express condition of submission and eligibility that each participant warrants and represents that the participant’s submission is solely owned by the participant, that the submission is wholly original with the participant, and that no other party has any ownership rights or ownership interest in the submission.

    • Each participant further represents and warrants to DOE and the other sponsors that the submission, and any use thereof by DOE or the other sponsors (or any of their respective partners, subsidiaries and affiliates), shall not: (i) be defamatory or libelous in any manner toward any person, (ii) constitute or result in any misappropriation or other violation of any person's publicity rights or right of privacy, or (iii) infringe, misappropriate or otherwise violate any intellectual property rights, proprietary rights, privacy rights, moral rights or any other rights of any person or entity.

    • A participant may contract with a third party for technical assistance to create the submission, provided the submission is solely the participant's work product and the result of the participant's work and the participant owns all rights to it.

    • Each submission must be in English. All accounting figures must be in U.S. dollars.

    • Electronic files in Microsoft Word (MS) should be saved in a .docx, .doc or .pdf extension; MS Excel Spreadsheet files should be saved in an .xls or .xlsx file extension; Adobe files should be saved in a .pdf file extension; and compressed files should be saved in a .zip file extension.

    • Submissions will not be accepted if they contain any matter that, in the sole discretion of DOE, is indecent, obscene, defamatory, libelous, in bad taste, or demonstrates a lack of respect for public morals or conduct.

    • If DOE, or the Judges, in their discretion, find any submission to be unacceptable, then such submission shall be deemed disqualified.

    • Deadline(s) – A submission must be available by the end date noted in the Challenge Timeline this Challenge.


As a condition of participation, all participants agree to provide DOE, upon request, documentation to credibly support any performance claims associated with the performance metrics in this Challenge.  If participants fail to provide enough information to allow DOE to adequately evaluate submissions against the review criteria for the Challenge, adequate documentation, DOE may exclude such insufficient submissions from consideration for any benefit associated with this Challenge.  Further, if participants provide inadequate information, DOE may disqualify the participant from any portion of the Challenge. Anyone who makes any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation to DOE; may be fined and imprisoned for up to 5 years under 18 USC 1001.

The Team Lead and all team members must agree to assume any and all risks related to this Challenge and waive all claims against the Federal Government and related entities, except in cases of willful misconduct, for any injury, death, damage, or loss of personal property, revenue or profits, whether direct, indirect, or consequential, arising from their participation in the competition, whether the injury, death, damage, or loss arises through negligence or otherwise.

The Team Lead shall submit all required documentation and evidence in English and all accounting figures shall be in U.S. dollars. Submissions may be reviewed, evaluated, and audited by independent third parties.

A team should have a Teaming Agreement (Agreement) signed by an authorized official or representative of each team member that adequately describes the relationship between the team members, the roles and responsibilities of the team members, and the duration of the Agreement. Additionally, the Agreement shall describe dispute and conflict resolution amongst the team members (including disputes related to participation), allocation of prize award amount(s) to team members, confidential or proprietary information between team members, and how and when the Agreement is subject to termination. DOE or its prize administrator will not intervene, mediate, or offer remedies in any disputes between team members.

The Team Lead acting on behalf of all team members agrees to sign Certificate of Team Eligibility to confirm unconditional agreement with all terms and conditions of this competition including all the items included in this section.

In accordance with 15 U.S.C. § 3719(i), any team member engaging directly in construction activities shall provide proof of general liability insurance or demonstrate financial responsibility of $1 million per incident and up to $5 million total for claims by a third party for death, bodily injury, or property damage or loss resulting from an activity carried out in connection with the competition, with the Federal Government named as an additional insured under the Team Lead’s insurance policy. Additionally, registered participants that are engaged directly in construction activities must agree to indemnify the Federal Government against third party claims for damages arising from or related to competition activities and for damage or loss to Government property resulting from such an activity.  By engaging in this competition you agree to take full responsibility for your actions in furtherance of any competition goals.  Any team members will hold DOE harmless for any activities associated with this competition.

Ideas and videos submitted as part of this Challenge must be submitted and released to the public under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (see http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

In addition to the rights under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, by making a submission and consenting to the rules of the Challenge, a participant is granting the following license to DOE, administrator, and any other third parties supporting DOE in the Challenge: a royalty-free, non-exclusive, worldwide perpetual license to copy, display publicly and use the submission for Government purpose. This license includes posting or linking to the Public submission on DOE's and administrator's websites and applications, including the Challenge Website, DOE websites, and partner websites, and inclusion of the submission in any other media, worldwide. The submission may be viewed by the DOE and its prize administrator, and reviewers/judges for purposes of the Challenge, including but not limited to screening and evaluation purposes. The DOE and its prize administrator, and any third parties acting on their behalf will also have the right to publicize participants name and, as applicable, the names of participant team members, organization, or large organization which participated in the submission on the Challenge website for a period of three years following the conclusion of the Challenge.

Participants agree to leave any videos they reference for this Challenge on the internet and available to the public until the end of the Performance Period.

Each participant represents and warrants that the participant is the sole author and copyright owner of the submission; that the submission is an original work of the participant and that the participant has acquired sufficient rights to use and to authorize others, including DOE, to use the submission, as specified throughout the Official Rules, that the submission does not infringe upon any copyright or upon any other third party rights of which the participant is aware; and that the submission is free of malware.