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Contest Number:
IC_2018_0019

GE's Water & Process Technologies Challenge: Innovative Central Tube Connections

GE's Water & Process Technologies uses advanced technologies to solve the world's complex challenges related to water availability and quality, increased productivity, cost reduction, and environmental regulations.

Spiral wound membranes are a building block in GE's advanced water systems. Central tube connections used in spiral wound membranes are a critical part of the design.  The spiral wound elements join to one another primarily through ABS plastic connectors. Currently, each interconnect is comprised of several independent components that must be combined to create a tight, leak-proof seal, as well as a structurally sound linkage. The goal of this Challenge is to identify the most viable means of connecting the component tubing. 

GE wants to improve the means of connection to eliminate unnecessary components, reduce cost, and improve efficiency for our customers as it relates to spiral wound membranes.

About the Challenge

NineSigma, representing the General Electric Companyseeks 3D design submissions for novel means of connecting the components of a plastic central tube assemblyDesigns should improve upon current system limitations by reducing the number of components, improving ease of installation and reducing the cost of the overall system. Find out More >>

Award

Participants in this competition vie for up to five (5) cash prize awards of US$20,000 each. Award winners will be have the opportunity to engage with GE Water engineers. Find out More >>

Timeline

Success Criteria

The ideal connection design will achieve one or more of the following:

 

  • Reduce the number of parts in the interconnect
  • Eliminate a step in the assembly process
  • Reduce the amount of material used in the connection
  • Improve manufacturability (time and/or cost)
  • Improve the east of installation by making the process more ergonomic
  • Improve installation by integrating components in the assembly
  • Maintain the viability of the O-ring seals (up to 1200psi)

The goal of this Challenge is strictly to identify the most viable means of connecting the component tubing. Designs submitted are not required to meet specifications for pressure differential in the operating system. Instead, selected top respondents will have the opportunity to work directly with GE in the optimization of their design for use in high pressure systems. Find out More >>

Submissions

Please ensure that the design is uploaded on the Response page to guarantee that your Entry is in compliance with the Challenge Rules. Designs should comprise of at minimum one CAD drawing of the proposed design (file types: .stl, .igs or .iges, and .stp or .step).

Preferred Collaboration types

Challenge Moderator
  • NineSigma Program Manager
  • NineSigma
Meet the General Electric Company Sponsors
  • Open Innovation Operations & Fastworks Integration
  • General Electric Company
  • Director, Open Innovation & Advanced Manufacturing
  • General Electric Company
Contact our Help Desk
 

Background

GE Water’s spiral wound reverse osmosis assemblies represent an industry standard in industrial water filtration technologies. For decades, these systems have been highly optimized for both efficiency and cost-effective implementation. The spiral wound elements join to one another primarily through ABS plastic connectors. Currently, each interconnect is comprised of several independent components that must be combine to create a tight, leak-proof seal, as well as a structurally sound linkage. Unfortunately, each additional component in the system increases the complexity of the overall installation and moreover represents a separate potential failure point.

 

Ideally, a means of connection that eliminated components, reduced cost and improved efficiency would provide an optimal solution for both suppliers and customers. Potential solutions may include screw/thread designs, male/female interconnects, integrated O-rings and seals, integrated locking mechanisms, material reduction or any other improvement over the current construct.

 

The goal of this Challenge is strictly to identify the most viable means of connecting the component tubing. Designs submitted are not required to meet specifications for pressure differential in the operating system. Instead, selected top respondents will have the opportunity to work directly with GE in the optimization of their design for use in high pressure systems.

 

DATES HAVE CHANGED.  SEE REVISED TIMES ON CHALLENGE WEBSITE.

 

See Official Rules for detailsSee challenge website for updated timeline information. Contest opens on October 14th, 2014. Must submit at least one entry by December 31st, 2014 to be eligible. Must be 18 years of age or older to participate. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited.

 

View the NineSights Terms of Use and GE's Official Rules for this Challenge.