RISN Incubator is excited to announce Trash Hack – Redesigning the future of plastics. Trash Hack is a new type of hackathon aimed at finding new and innovative solutions to reduce, repurpose, recycle, and design out solid waste in the City of Phoenix. The focus of the current one is on PLASTICS.


Sustainability minded innovators (like you)! This includes students and faculty in engineering, business, industrial design, computer science, life or biological science, chemistry, biomimicry, graphic design, architecture, education, and more.


The sky is the limit and teams can develop technologies, products, services, solutions, methods, etc. that reduce, reuse, or divert plastic waste.



Plastic is forever, is not bio-degradable, and virtually every piece of plastic that was ever made still exists in some shape or form. Over 50 percent of the plastic we use, we use just once and throw away. Plastic accounts for around 10 percent of the total waste we generate. Plastic constitutes approximately 90 percent of all trash floating on the ocean's surface, and enough plastic is thrown away each year to circle the earth four times. Let’s change this.


Friday, Sept. 29 @ 5:30 PM to Sunday, Oct. 1 @ 3:00 PM


At ASU's new residential community, Tooker House



This hackathon is open to any and all current ASU students, this includes:

  • Undergraduate and Graduate students of any grade or skill level
  • Students of any major
  • Students of any background


There will be required status report submissions throughout the hack, and a final pitch deliverable. Each status report has its own individual requirements, and should reflect the work of your overall project for the Trash Hack.

Status Report #1 - Business Model Canvas

Deadline Fri. 9/29 @ 9PM

Upload your completed business model canvas and be prepared to present your ideas to the hack for feedback.

Status Report #2 - Conceptual Idea & Plan

Deadline Sat. 9/30 @ 11:45AM

Create a plan, based on your business model canvas and feedback as to what you want to create this weekend during the Trash Hack. Be sure to outline what your prototype will be, and what you want your final product and deliverable to be!

Status Report #3 - Prototyping

Deadline Sat. 9/30 @ 5PM

For this prototype, you'll want to submit your current prototype. Depending on the solution you are creating, this might be a conceptual model, a physical model, or a mock up of an app/program. Be sure to explain your ideas so that they are clear, and be prepared to give a pitch to explain your model.

Status Report #4 - Final Pitch Practice

Deadline Sun. 10/1 @ 10AM

Create a 3 minute video pitch of your final presentation using our video lab, and upload to YouTube or Vimeo for submission. Be prepared to recieve feedback on your pitch before the final pitch.

Final Pitch

Deadline Sun. 10/1 @ 11:45AM

Upload any visual aids you want displayed (pictures, pitch deck, etc.) during your final pitch, and prepare to deliver your 3 minute pitch to the judges. Any visual aids not uploaded on time may not be displayed during your final pitch.

Hackathon Sponsors


$2,499 in prizes

MakerBot Replicator+

The all-new MakerBot Replicator+ combines unparalleled performance with superior results and lasting reliability. The Replicator+ prints high-quality concept models 30% faster, easier, and with a 25% bigger build volume than it’s predecessor. To ensure consistent performance, our new 3D printers and their subsystems were re-engineered and rigorously tested for over 380,000 hours across multiple facilities. For greater reliability, the Smart Extruder+ comes standard and key components within the printer are redesigned with stiffer materials and a sturdier construction.

With MakerBot’s powerful workflow tools, the Replicator+ streamlines desktop 3D printing for professionals and educators. MakerBot Print software allows you to import native CAD files, like assemblies and parts, remotely manage all connected printers over the Cloud, and optimize prints for speed and quality.

*One MakerBot is awarded per team.

RISN Circular Design Workshop (5)

The RISN Circular Design Workshop is a two week workshop series designed to help you advance your business based in circular economy or circularize your existing business. During this workshop you'll work through your own business model and receive expert advice and feedback to help you launch your circular business.

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:

How to enter

To register for the event, please go here.

Note, registration closes at 3PM on 9/27.


Dr. Thomas Seager

Dr. Thomas Seager
Professor, Arizona State University

Judging Criteria

  • Value Proposition
    Is this a feasible idea? Does the final product create the value it intends to create? Does the final product create a viable business model?
  • Redesigns Plastics
    Does this final product redesign the future of plastics in some way? Does it divert, reuse, repurpose or design out waste? Does it incorporate the concepts of circular economy?
  • Presentation
    Does the team communicate their ideas clearly? Do they have the 'sell' component in their pitch? Do they communicate the problem and what their solution is?

Questions? Email the hackathon manager

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Hackathon sponsors

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