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New Mexico Team Receives $10,000 EPA Grant

Release Date: 09/15/2006
Contact Information: Dave Bary or Cynthia Fanning, 214-665-2200 or

(Dallas, Texas – September 15, 2006) Dr. Warren Ostergren and his student team at the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology in Socorro, New Mexico, received a $10,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s People, Prosperity and the Planet (P3) competition. EPA’s grants to student teams and their faculty advisors help them design sustainable technologies that can help the developed and developing world.

Dr. Ostergren’s team will work to develop a lower-cost heliostat, yielding an alternative energy system that is less taxing on the environment than conventional fossil-fuel dependant methods. A heliostat is a mirror-based system used to continuously reflect sunlight onto a central receiver and convert it into electrical power.

The P3 competition is open to teams of students attending colleges, universities and other post-secondary educational institutions. Interdisciplinary teams are strongly encouraged, including representatives from multiple engineering departments and/or departments of chemistry, architecture, industrial design, economics, policy, social sciences, business and communication. P3 highlights the three pillars of sustainability – people, prosperity, and the planet – as the next step beyond P2, or pollution prevention.

In spring 2008, the teams will be invited to bring their designs to Washington, D.C., to compete for EPA’s P3 Award, an additional grant of as much as $75,000 to further develop and implement projects in the field. More information on the P3 program is at