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DOE Launches Energy Storage Grand Challenge

Jan. 17, 2020
The challenge will help support U.S. leadership in the field while providing R&D funding opportunities and more.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Dan Brouillette recently announced that it has launched the Energy Storage Grand Challenge, a program aimed to accelerate the development, commercialization and utilization of next-generation energy storage technologies

The main objective of the challenge is to create and sustain U.S. leadership in energy storage utilization and exports, including a strong domestic manufacturing supply chain that is independent of foreign sources of critical materials, by 2030, through a combination of recognizing and encouraging both research and development (R&D) and leadership to address associated challenges.

Using a combination of R&D funding opportunities, prizes, partnerships and other programs, the Energy Storage Grand Challenge sets the following goals for the U.S. to reach by 2030:

  1. Technology Development: Establish ambitious, achievable performance goals, and a comprehensive R&D portfolio to achieve them;
  2. Technology Transfer: Accelerate the technology pipeline from research to system design to private sector adoption through rigorous system evaluation, performance validation, siting tools, and targeted collaborations;
  3. Policy and Valuation: Develop best-in-class models, data, and analysis to inform the most effective value proposition and use cases for storage technologies;
  4. Manufacturing and Supply Chain: Design new technologies to strengthen U.S. manufacturing and recyclability, and to reduce dependence on foreign sources of critical materials; and
  5. Workforce: Train the next generation of American workers to meet the needs of the 21st century electric grid and energy storage value chain.

The challenge is managed by the DOE’s Research and Technology Investment Committee (RTIC), which was developed in 2019 to convene key elements of the DOE that support R&D activities, coordinate its strategic research priorities and identify potential cross-cutting opportunities in both basic and applied science and technology.

As an initial step in the challenge, the DOE will soon release requests for information (RFI) soliciting stakeholder feedback on the key questions and issues that the challenge seeks to address. Over the coming weeks, it will also host a series of workshops with key stakeholders to share information about various storage technologies, discuss current barriers to deployment and help shape the work that will bring those technologies to market. This work will inform the development of a coordinated R&D roadmap to 2030 for a broad suite of storage and flexibility technologies.

To learn more about the Energy Storage Grand Challenge, the RTIC and more DOE goals, read the original release