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$43 Million in Subsidies for Energy Technologies That Private Investors Skipped

Written by Gary North on August 16, 2012

Private investors are always on the lookout for new technologies that will make them rich if the technologies are successful. But when they spot turkeys that are likely to become money pits, they pass.

That’s where the Department of Energy steps in.

This month, the DOE is focusing on energy storage technologies. It’s all part of a program unofficially called “Assault and Battery.”

Here is a press release from the agency.

WASHINGTON – The Department of Energy today announced that 19 transformative new projects will receive a total of $43 million in funding from the Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) to leverage the nation’s brightest scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs to develop breakthrough energy storage technologies and support promising small businesses. These projects are supported through two new ARPA-E programs — Advanced Management and Protection of Energy Storage Devices (AMPED) and Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) – and will focus on innovations in battery management and storage to advance electric vehicle technologies, help improve the efficiency and reliability of the electrical grid and provide important energy security benefits to America’s armed forces. . . .

Twelve research projects are receiving $30 million in funding under the AMPED program, which aims to develop advanced sensing and control technologies that could dramatically improve and provide new innovations in safety, performance, and lifetime for grid-scale and vehicle batteries. Unlike other Department of Energy efforts to push the frontiers of battery chemistry, AMPED is focused on maximizing the potential of existing battery chemistries. . . .

ARPA-E is also announcing a total of $13 million for seven projects to enterprising small businesses to pursue cutting-edge energy storage developments for stationary power and electric vehicles. These projects will develop new innovative battery chemistries and battery designs, continuing ARPA-E’s funding for storage technologies. . . .

ARPA-E was launched in 2009 to seek out transformational, breakthrough technologies that are too risky for private-sector investment but have the potential to translate science into quantum leaps in energy technology, form the foundation for entirely new industries, and have large commercial impacts. Prior to today’s announcement, ARPA-E has attracted over 5,000 applications from research teams, which have resulted in approximately 180 groundbreaking projects worth nearly $500 million.

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One thought on “$43 Million in Subsidies for Energy Technologies That Private Investors Skipped

  1. Dumber than a post. battery technology as it exists is maxed out already. No investor with a modicum of sense would buy into such a thing. But finding new battery storage technology maybe. Even then its highly speculative. Best to leave that to the auto industry's R&D programs.