The X-PRIZE Foundation has announced the $1.4m Wendy Schmidt Oil-Cleanup X Challenge. It is designed to attract teams from around the world to develop innovative, rapidly deployable, and highly efficient methods of capturing crude oil from the ocean surface.

The Wendy Schmidt Oil-Cleanup X Challenge has two phases:

Phase I: from August 2010 – March 2011, teams from around the world are invited to register for the competition and submit their approach to clean-up oil slicks created by spills or leaks from ships, tankers, land drainage, waste disposal, or oil platform spills. An expert panel of judges from industry and academia will evaluate all of the proposals.

Phase II: the judges will select the top teams to demonstrate their ability to efficiently and rapidly clean up oil on the ocean surface in a head-to-head competition. These proofs of capability, which will determine the winner, will take place at OHMSETT – the National Oil Spill Response Research & Renewable Energy Test Facility.

The top team that demonstrates the ability to recover oil on the water surface at the highest oil recovery rate (ORR) and recovery efficiency (RE) will win the Grand Purse of $1m. Second place will win $300,000 and third place will win $100,000 in prizes.

This is a great opportunity to prove your equipment has what it takes to clean up oil. Take part in the challenging tank test and go head to head with the competition. Registration is open until the end of Phase I. Register your team now at or

If you have any questions, please visit the X-PRIZE Foundation website.