UCSD wins $3 million grant from U.S. Department of Energy

LA JOLLA (CNS) – UC San Diego won a $3 million U.S. Department of Energy grant to help move energy storage systems into the marketplace, the university announced Tuesday.

UCSD will use the money to test and validate the performance of systems funded by the DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy.

“Energy storage has the potential to transform the global energy landscape,” said Gary Matthews, vice chancellor for resource management and planning at UCSD. “It is a valuable resource that needs to be developed for meeting future energy needs.”

According to the DOE, the amount of electricity generated at a given time is relatively static, but since demand fluctuates, the ability to store large amounts of power on the grid would be an enormous breakthrough. It would also help grid operators mix in renewable energy to power created by traditional sources, according to the agency.

ARPA-E has invested in several promising storage technologies, but they’re still in the early stages of development and require more data on their performance, reliability and safety, according to UCSD, which currently operates several types of small storage systems.

University officials said technologies that perform well in laboratory testing will be deployed for extended evaluation on the campus microgrid. The systems will also be studied for commercial viability.

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