Patel Grand Challenge FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

This page will house the responses to all questions asked in the online form. All answers will be posted within 48 hours.

Q: I have an idea for the “smart pot”. What do I do now?

A: Once you have an idea, please consult with the Patel Grand Challenge guidelines to make sure you are eligible. If you are eligible, please proceed with the application that can be found here .

Q: Engineering Without Borders club is a partner with the NGO, Madagascar Biodiversity Partnership (MBP), which gives awareness to the world’s unique biodiversity while instilling ownership and ultimately empowering individuals to take responsible action for a sustainable future. Engineering without Borders would work alongside MBP to compete in the Patel Grand Challenge.

A: When applying for the challenge with partners, all partners must be located and registered in one of the approved developing countries listed in the Patel Grand Challenge guidelines in Table 1.

Q: Is it my understanding that applicants from the U.S. more specifically USF students are not eligible for apply for the Patel Grand Challenge? A group of individuals and I who attend USF are interested in this project.

A: When applying for the challenge with partners, all partners must be located and registered in one of the approved developing countries listed in the Patel Grand Challenge guidelines in Table 1.

Q: We checked the list of eligible countries for the Grand Patel Challenge and Mexico is not there, so we want to be sure if we are not eligible for the challenge.

A: That is correct, Mexico is not on the list of eligible countries. Eligible countries have a GDP of up to $10,000 and do not appear on the U.S. State Sponsors of Terrorism list.

Q: If I apply, will the invention still be my intellectual property, and I will have my interest if it will be implemented?

A: Per Section 4.11 of the governance document, “To the extent there is any patentability, patent rights will remain with the Applicant.”

Q: We have recently received an invitation to participate in this challenge but we noticed that Malaysia is not listed in table 1. Can we still participate in the challenge?

A: Malaysia is not on the list of eligible countries, therefore you are not eligible to apply. Eligible countries have a GDP of up to $10,000 and do not appear on the U.S. State Sponsors of Terrorism list.

Q: I am Zimbabwean born, but had to leave Zimbabwe due to the political situation and now reside in Australia but was forced to give up my Zimbabwean citizenship to remain in Australia (Zimbabwe does not allow dual citizenship). Would I be eligible to enter as an individual? A: Unfortunately you may not apply. In section 3.1 of the guidelines it states that “Only citizens of or organizations with their primary place of business is within the developing countries listed in Table 1 may submit a proposal.”

Q: If I have an idea for a smart pot but am a U.S. citizen, am I correct in assuming that I cannot submit the idea even if I can identify individuals or organizations in an eligible country who would be willing to collaborate with me?

A: That is correct, you are not eligible to apply with individuals or organizations in an eligible country if you are a U.S. citizen.

Q: Regarding the challenge, I have a question. I am Korean but serve as a project consultant to a foundation in Malawi. If the foundation applies, am I qualified to join the team?

A:You would not be eligible to apply as part of the Malawi foundation team.

Q:I would like to find out whether the smart pot should be a single container that once water has been pored into it, it automatically becomes clean, Or should have different containers so that the last one receives clean water throuh a tube after passing various filters in containers? Will illustrations be allowed in the proposal? Thanks.

A:The smart pot should be one single container. Illustrations are permitted in the proposal

Q:I am a Ghanaian student. Am I eligible for application?

A: Yes, applications coming from Ghana are eligible.

Q: Section 2 of the TPS includes a table with four columns for inserting diagrams and text for describing the smart pot. Can this table be presented in landscape form while still meeting the font size and text spacing requirements to present this information? Can multiple pages be used to completely describe the smart pot and include larger sized drawings for clarity?

A: You may present the table in landscape form and you may submit multiple pages to describe the smart pot, including larger scale drawings.

Q:In the manual above, the pre submission deadline is mentioned as 1 March 2012 and on the web page it is 2 April 2012. Which one is to be followed?

A: The deadline has been extended to April 2, 2012.

Q: I Just have two questions to make: 1.What is the final dead line to submit the Preproposal. 2. The official language in which the Preproposal has to be presented should it be only English or can it also be written in Spanish.

A: The deadline is April 2, 2012 and the official language the proposal must be submitted in is English.

Q: I’m keen to apply, but I see that you want designs that have not been patented. I do hold patents on the two kinds of pottery water filters, for which I’d apply, however, this is strictly for the purpose of protecting local manufacturers. I.e. I have not intention of using the intellectual property for my own monetary gain. Should this be permissable, please do let me know.

A: On page 5 of the guidelines document it says: “Should not have been patented in any jurisdiction”, therefore your entry will not be eligible.

Q: Can we use Solid modelling software to illustrate our design in the final submission form ?

A: Yes you may.

Q: We have a simple and low cost pottery water filter that meets all of your criteria, however, I personally am a U.S. citizen, and not from a so-called developing country. Would an application be appropriate?

A: No, U.S. citizens are not eligible.

Q: Can a US citizen working full-time for an organization based in an eligible country apply as lead in a consortium? Are social enterprise eligible for this prize?

A: No, U.S. citizens living and working in eligible countries cannot apply. Social enterprises fulfilling the criteria are eligible.

Q: Is there any material constraint for the design? And is it possible to know the impurity content of water to be purified? Is it to purify tap water with some biological contamination and some harmful salts or does it require to treat even toxic and industrially contaminated water?

A: There is no material constrain for the design. The purpose is to disinfect water at the point-of-use to make it safe for drinking. Please refer to page 1 of the guidelines for more details.

Q: We want to confirm our participation in Patel grand challenge but we are still not ready with our initial pre-proposal.I just wanted to inquire that how can we confirm our participation before march 5,2012.

A: Pre-proposals are due Monday, April 2, 2012.

Q: 1) The request for e-mail necessarily includes the password? 2) We estimate that the device we intent to present for the Preproposal will weight around 25 Kgs. That is without the local filtering products. Is it accceptable?

A: 1) Only one email is required to create a user name and password on the submission form. 2.)We do not expect any products to be sent along with the Pre-proposal. We are only looking for the design during the first phase of the competition, not the actual product. Please do not send a product or your physical proposed pot at this stage of the competition.

Q: We are three undergraduate engineering students who want to participate in this challenge and we are confused as to how we should answer questions like What is the legal nature of your organization? What financial audit principles and/or accounting rules are practiced in your organization? same goes for W-8 IRS tax form.

A: You may apply as individuals, however you will need to submit a W-8 BEN form along with your application as required.

Q: Please explain why we should fill the W-8 IRS Tax Form, Once we receive the confirmation of eligibility.

A: A W-8 BEN form is required as the prize money may be subject to U.S. taxes. In order to be eligible for the prize, this form must be completed.

Strong Q: Is it possible to take part in this competition as a team?

A: Yes, you may apply as a team.

Strong Q: I’m interesting to submit a project on removal of arsenic from ground water by electrochemical techniques. Is this under the preview of research area?

A: As long as the final product is in the form of a water collection pot/device, your techniques/methods are up to you.

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