Dow Big Data Challenge

This year chapters from Purdue University, Texas A&M University and University at Buffalo organized a Big Data Analysis competition.  This competition is sponsored by Dow Chemical and consists in the following:


The Dow Big Data Challenge will entail a study of the Dow hopper car rail fleet. The hopper car fleet is very large with approximately 40,000 shipments per year. In specific, the study will evaluate the value of changes to the structure (site storage, fleet management, etc.) to improve hopper car costs and the impact of upcoming Shale Oil expansions in the Gulf Coast. Some of the key inputs will include railcar loading rates, demand, capital, operational and freight costs.


  1. Evaluate and analyze the data given by DOW. Identify and derive key points.
  2. Provide some insights by looking at the data. Can you come up with any result that would be useful for DOW to know?


  • 1st Place: Kindle Fire HDX 7″ Tablet (~$200 value for each team member)
  • 2nd Place: External Hard Drive (~$100 value for each team member)
  • 3rd Place: Amazon Gift Card (~$50 value for each team member)


There are three stages in this challenges.The final submission for this event will be evaluated by representatives of Dow Chemical.

For more details please click here.


Groups of at most 3 people (at most 2 graduate students) formed within the same university. These groups will be randomly matched later with another group from a different university to form teams of 4-5 people. Teams have to be submitted before Wednesday February 26 at midnight. You can submit your team in the following form: