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TEAMS Logo 2020Annual Theme

Focused on a new theme each year, original academic and innovative concepts are developed for TEAMS based on the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges. Tackling these challenges requires critical job-readiness skills such as collaboration, analytical thinking, and multi-dimensional problem-solving. The 2020 TEAMS theme is “Engineering in the Wild.”

Scenario Topics

The following scenario topics will be featured in the multiple choice portion of the 2020 competition:

TEAMS High School ScenariosHigh School:

  1. Preserving the Wild in Sub-Saharan Africa: Your team will consider engineering applications in the wild where engineering intersects with the ecotourism industry and conservation efforts.
  2. Sustainable Land Development and Water Conservation: Your team will consider site selection and development patterns using sustainable design components such as alternative transportation, water reuse, and incorporation of natural processes to reduce the environmental footprint of the development and preserve the wild.
  3. Engineering and Natural Systems: Your team will explore different nature-inspired algorithms and principles used to tackle large-scale problems in areas such as vehicle route planning.
  4. Electricity off the Grid and into the Wild: Your team will perform calculations and basic interpretations of real data in order to evaluate designs used in different environmental contexts.
  5. Environmental Damages from Renewable Energy: Your team will utilize effective design requirements to examine the trade-offs in using renewable energy to preserve the environment and the current balance of nature.
  6. Transportation in the Frozen Tundra: Your team will apply the laws of nature and time to determine the transportation of time sensitive cargo within a snowstorm in Alaska.
  7. Canopy Walkways for Wildlife Crossings: Your team will utilize various tools and formulas in order to understand and optimize the design of wildlife bridges.
  8. Biomimicry Engineering Designs in the Wild: Your team will use basic principles of physics and mechanics to understand and measure various aspects of different organisms and how they may be used for new engineering designs.


TEAMS Middle School ScenariosMiddle School:

  1. Hiking Trail Design: As engineers working on a new trail development project, your team will be tasked to provide design support as part of the development team. You will consider factors influencing the trail design including gradation, drainage, material suitability, and material volume calculations. 
  2. Fish Passage Engineering: Your team will be tasked to provide preliminary design evaluations and calculations to support the design of a fish passage. You will consider factors influencing the design of fish passages including species monitoring, water flow, and passage geometry.   
  3. Agricultural Irrigation Systems Design: Your team will be tasked to develop an agricultural irrigation system used to provide water to a forage crop. You will be asked to evaluate the irrigation system efficiency, determine flow through irrigation diversion structures and within canals, and balance ecological concerns.  
  4. Lakeshore Erosion: Your team has been tasked with considering different types of erosion stabilization methods for a project. You will have to balance the effectiveness, cost, and environmental impact of different designs, while accounting for material volumes, constructability, and project economic considerations.
One-page overviews of each of the scenario topics with web links are available in the coach online account, once the coach has completed TEAMS registration.