US: $120 million to establish new batteries and storage hub

03. December 2012 | Industry & Suppliers, Markets & Trends, Storage & smart grids | By:  Shamsiah Ali-Oettinger

A team led by Argonne National Lab has been selected for an award of up to US$120 million to establish a new Batteries and Energy Storage Hub over five years.

The research at the Energy Storage Hub has the potential to revolutionize the energy industry.

The hub, which is to be known as the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research or JCESR (pronounced "J-Caeser"), will bring together five Department of Energy (DOE) national laboratories, five universities and four private companies to research and advance battery performance.

It will integrate efforts at several successful independent research programs into one large, coordinated effort designed to bring battery advances to new heights. George W. Crabtree, Argonne Senior Scientist will serve as Director of the Hub.

U.S. Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, Senator Dick Durbin, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel came together to make the announcement about the multi-partner project.

Partners

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories, and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory will partner Argonne. 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, Inc.; Johnson Controls, Inc.; and Clean Energy Trust. JCESR is the fourth Energy Innovation Hub established by the DOE since 2010.

"This is a partnership between world leading scientists and world leading companies, committed to ensuring that the advanced battery technologies the world needs will be invented and built right here in America,” said Secretary Chu. "Based on the tremendous advances that have been made in the past few years, there are very good reasons to believe that advanced battery technologies can and will play an increasingly valuable role in strengthening America’s energy and economic security by reducing our oil dependence, upgrading our aging power grid, and allowing us to take greater advantage of intermittent energy sources like wind and solar."

Governor Quinn is providing $5 million through his Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction plan to aid in the development of the JCESR facility which will be located on the Argonne National Laboratory campus in Chicago. He has also committed to working with the General Assembly to provide an additional $30 million in future capital funding for the building.

"Since taking office, I have been focused on making Chicago the electric vehicle and batteries capital of the nation," stated Mayor Rahm Emanuel. "This includes creating incentives to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles, attracting companies to manufacture electric vehicles, and now, working with Argonne to make sure that Chicago is at the epicenter of research on this subject. All of these pieces fit together into a comprehensive strategy that will allow Chicago to lead in this industry, from conception to construction to implementation. I will continue to work to attract more companies, create more jobs and foster more economic development in this crucial space."


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