Distributed Energy Resources

DOE offers funding for long-duration storage

The Department of Energy recently announced up to $30 million in funding for projects as part of a new Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) program called Duration Addition to electricitY Storage (DAYS).

The DOE said that DAYS project teams will build technologies to enable long-duration energy storage on the power grid, providing reliable electricity for 10 to approximately 100 hours.

The DOE notes that “Energy storage will play an increasingly critical role in the resilient grid of the future. Storage systems provide important services, including improving grid stability, providing backup power, and allowing for greater integration of renewable resources. Today’s dominant storage options have limitations that inhibit their use as long-duration solutions, particularly their high cost.”

The DOE said that the DAYS teams will develop energy storage systems that are deployable in almost any location and discharge electricity at a per-cycle cost target much lower than what is possible in systems available today.

The funding opportunity is open to a range of storage technology choices, including thermal, mechanical, electrochemical, chemical, and others. Driving the challenge are an aggressive set of cost targets, siting, power output, and duty cycle requirements, the DOE noted.  

Additional details are available here.

Meanwhile, the DOE recently announced up to $68.5 million in available funding for early-stage research of advanced vehicle technologies that will enable more affordable mobility, strengthen domestic energy security, and enhance U.S. economic growth.

The funding opportunity will address priorities in advanced batteries and electrification, including cyber security related to electric vehicle charging; materials for both lighter weight vehicle structures and advanced powertrains; technology integration and energy-efficient mobility systems; and engines and fuels, including technologies for off-road applications as well as the co-optimization of engines and fuels.

DOE unveils $19 million to support fast-charging

The DOE on April 30 announced $19 million to support twelve new cost-shared research projects focused on batteries and vehicle electrification technologies to enable extreme fast charging. Selected research projects are focused on developing electric vehicle systems that can recharge rapidly at high power levels, decreasing typical charge times to 15 minutes or less using a connector or wireless fast charging system. 

DOE said the projects will help advance DOE’s research on batteries and electrification aimed at reducing battery pack cost to under $100 per kilowatt-hour, increasing range to over 300 miles, and charging in under 15 minutes or less by 2028.

Recharging current EV batteries takes much longer than refueling the average liquid-fueled internal combustion vehicle. Slower charge rates are required to allow the lithium-ions to penetrate to the deepest portions of the active material on the electrode, DOE noted.

Charging at too high a rate runs the risk of lithium plating, increased battery temperature, and other detrimental side chemical reactions which decrease life and performance characteristics of the batteries. 

The following nine selected battery projects focus on advanced anodes, electrolytes, and battery cell designs that can be charged rapidly - in less than 10 minutes - while still maintaining performance over the 10-year life goal:

DOE selected battery projects 

  • Regents of the University of California, University of California San Diego (San Diego, CA) - $650,000
  • Pennsylvania State University (University Park, PA) - $1,000,000
  • Regents of the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI) - $1,500,000
  • SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (Menlo Park, CA) - $1,500,000
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory (Oak Ridge, TN) - $900,000
  • Microvast Inc. (Orlando, FL) - $1,500,000
  • Research Foundation for the State University of New York - Stony Brook University (Stony Brook, NY) - $800,000
  • University of Tennessee (Knoxville, TN) - $720,000
  • Coulometrics, LLC (Chattanooga, TN) - $1,000,000

The three selected electrification projects listed below will develop and verify electric drive systems and infrastructure for electric vehicle extreme fast charging, which increases charging power levels from current home charging at 7 kW to power levels up to 400 kW. They will also reduce typical charging times from 8 hours down to 15 minutes or less.

  • Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification Inc. (Salt Lake City, UT) - $4,300,000
  • Delta Products Corporation (Fremont, CA) - $3,500,000
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory (Oak Ridge, TN) - $2,200,000