DOE announced on February 7 its plans to launch a new energy innovation hub for advanced research on batteries and energy storage, with an investment of up to $120 million over five years. The Batteries and Energy Storage Hub will focus on accelerating research and development of electrochemical energy storage for transportation and the electric grid. The hub will be funded at up to $20 million in Fiscal Year 2012 and managed by the Basic Energy Sciences program of DOE's Office of Science.
Universities, national laboratories, nonprofit organizations, and private firms are eligible to compete and are encouraged to form partnerships when submitting their proposals. Interdisciplinary research and development conducted through the new Energy Innovation Hub will help advance cutting-edge energy storage and battery technologies. These technologies can be used to improve the reliability and the efficiency of the electrical grid; better integrate renewable energy technologies as part of the electrical system; and reduce the nation's dependence on foreign oil using electric and hybrid vehicles.
Energy innovation hubs are designed to bring together teams of scientists and engineers across intellectual disciplines to rapidly accelerate scientific discoveries and shorten the path from laboratory innovation to technological development and commercial deployment of critical energy technologies. Letters of Intent to apply are due March 1, 2012, with full applications due May 31, 2012. The award selection is expected this summer. See the DOE press release , the funding opportunity announcement and the energy innovation hubs website .