I am predicting transformational new battery systems for electric vehicles, and I am confident this will happen.
Why? Because the world’s leading scientists, engineers and manufacturers in energy storage are coming together under a single organizational roof and are being provided with the tools, resources and market reach necessary to produce major breakthroughs.
A multi-partner team, led by Argonne National Laboratory, has been awarded of up to $120 million over five years to establish a new Batteries and Energy Storage Hub.
The Hub, to be known as the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR), will combine the R&D firepower of five U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) national laboratories, five universities and four private firms in an effort aimed at “achieving revolutionary advances in battery performance,” say officials at the DOE.
In case you didn’t know, advancing next generation battery and energy storage technologies for electric and hybrid cars and the electricity grid are an element of President Obama’s energy strategy to reduce America’s reliance on foreign oil and lower energy costs for U.S. consumers.
JCESR brings the private sector, national labs and universities together to push the limits on battery advances and deliver new technologies and scientific approaches needed to transform the battery and energy storage industry and spur commercial innovation.
Other national labs partnering with Argonne include: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.
University partners include: Northwestern University, University of Chicago, University of Illinois-Chicago, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign and University of Michigan.
The four industrial partners are: Dow Chemical Company, Applied Materials, Johnson Controls and Clean Energy Trust.
JCESR is the fourth Energy Innovation Hub established by the DOE since 2010.
Energy Innovation Hubs are major integrated research centers with researchers from many different institutions and technical backgrounds that combine basic and applied research with engineering to accelerate scientific discovery in critical energy areas. They are modeled after the strong scientific management characteristics of the Manhattan Project, Lincoln Lab at MIT that developed radar, AT&T Bell Laboratories that developed the transistor and, more recently, the Bioenergy Research Centers to pioneer advanced techniques in biotechnology, including biofuels.