NATIONAL HARBOR, Md., Oct. 25, 2021 — The Defense TechConnect Innovation Summit, sponsored by Advanced Technology International (ATI) and the Resilient Infrastructure + Secure Energy (RISE) Consortium™, concluded Thursday after a week of innovation pitches and awards, keynote presentations, networking, and expo opportunities.

The RISE Innovation Challenge, held last Monday afternoon, featured 12 finalists – all members of the RISE Consortium – who were down-selected from about 200 submissions. The 12 finalists pitched their technologies to a panel of judges made up of industry and government experts, who ultimately awarded five winners with $50,000 in total prize money. Those winners were: Creare LLC, Emera Technologies, Go Electric Inc., Mainspring Linear Generator, and Urban Electric Power. The remaining finalists were: ALD Technical Solutions LLC, Custom Electronics Inc., Disaster Tech, Inventev, Modula S Inc., National Energy USA LLC, and TRIDEC Services Inc.

View the event photo gallery here.

RISE Innovation Challenge Photo

Michael Wu, Executive Director of the RISE Consortium (L, at podium), introduces Chris Van Metre (R, in front of screen), President & CEO of Advanced Technology International, during the RISE Consortium Member Meeting, Oct. 19 at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Md.

The following day featured a RISE Consortium keynote presentation in the morning and a member meeting in the afternoon. The member meeting included a panel discussion of government experts, working session among members, matchmaking presentation by ATI’s strategic partner govmates, and a networking social. RISE Consortium Executive Director Michael Wu moderated the panel discussion, and he was joined by Shawn Bennett (Senior Advisor, Air Force Office of Energy Assurance), RuthAnne Darling (Director of Operational Energy, OSD), and Ben Richardson (Portfolio Director of Advanced Energy and Materials, Defense Innovation Unit).

The RISE Consortium also welcomed its 300th member last week and received dozens of new applications during the Summit. In just six months since being officially announced, the RISE Consortium has quickly become a powerful industry forum, as members of all sizes and backgrounds have joined the collaboration and shared ideas through monthly webinars with industry and government experts. In addition to the Innovation Challenge, member meeting, and keynote presentation, ATI hosted an engaging RISE Consortium booth in the expo hall. A total of 2,000 individuals attended the Defense TechConnect Innovation Summit, which annually connects U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) offices and industry leaders with the world’s best innovations.

“This year’s RISE Innovation Challenge demonstrated the breadth of technologies and intellectual capital of this community, which is committed to DoD’s ambitious energy and climate goals,” said Michael Wu, RISE Consortium Executive Director. “We must strengthen our military’s capabilities to confront climate and energy security challenges, and more than 300 RISE Consortium members have pledged to join the fight.”

The RISE Consortium is dedicated to energy and climate action for the U.S. federal government. Its focus areas include: installation energy resilience, climate resilience, and operational energy resilience. Currently, there is no cost to join this transformational platform to connect to the energy and climate innovation ecosystems. To learn more, please visit the newly redesigned


The mission of the Resilient Infrastructure + Secure Energy (RISE) Consortium™ is to address the energy security and climate crises by reimagining how we use, generate, transport, and store energy and how we build efficient, modern, resilient infrastructure. The RISE Consortium will work with innovators and experts to rapidly deploy technologies for installation and operational energy, integrate energy and climate resilience into performance contracting, and develop new business models to ensure those solutions are scalable. The consortium also serves as an industry forum to engage with new federal energy and resilience policies, standards, and programs. Advanced Technology International, the pioneer in R&D collaboration management, partnered with industry leader Converge Strategies, LLC to launch the RISE Consortium. | LinkedIn | Twitter | YouTube