The RIT participates in the energy storage initiative

The Rochester Institute of Technology will play a role in a state initiative that targets the growth of the energy storage and development industry.

The university, through its Battery Prototyping Center, will be part of New Energy New York, a state hub for innovation, manufacturing, and workforce development in new battery-led by SUNY Binghamton. Broome County University recently received federal funding for the first phase of development of battery technology and the energy storage sector.

The funds, which come from the regional Build Back Better challenge, aim to develop and strengthen regional industrial clusters across the country. Each beneficiary could receive up to $ 100 million.

Sixty finalists, each a coalition, proposed projects to develop or evolve sectors and create and train people to create resilient economies. These finalists, chosen from a pool of 529 applicants, are now competing in the second phase, with the aim of implementing three to eight projects.

New Energy New York, a project supported by Senator Charles Schumer, DN.Y., aims to strengthen emerging battery technology and the energy ecosystem of upstate New York. Much of the growth will center on the first lithium-ion battery plant that is slated to open by 2022 in the Binghamton / Broome County area, according to RIT officials. RIT’s Battery Prototyping Center joins academic institutions, nonprofits, including the NY Battery and Energy Storage Consortium, and government agencies: New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, Empire State Development, and Broome County.

A $ 2.5 million site, funded by NYSERDA and Empire State Development, the Battery Prototyping Center was established in 2015 to support the early development of next-generation lithium-ion cells and materials. Since then, the center has worked with over 100 clients from government, industry and academia.

Companies can rent space and work with scientists on research and development projects. They can also receive training on equipment and processes to help them start their business. As part of New Energy New York, the center is expected to bring its expertise to research projects, develop workforce development initiatives and support the supply chain program.

The project plans to contribute to the demand for a secure supply chain for lithium batteries by 2030. The United States intends to actively participate in the global quest for a sustainable future. In September 2020, the departments of energy, commerce, defense and state launched the Federal Consortium for Advanced Batteries. The consortium is responsible for accelerating the development of a national industrial base for advanced batteries, which is essential for increased acceptance of electric vehicles, for beginners. With this plan come new jobs in manufacturing and the supply chain.

A recent report from the World Economic Forum estimates that the battery value chain will generate a total of 10 million jobs worldwide by 2030. This growth is linked to the use of electric vehicles, fueling sustainability. The batteries could deliver 30% of the required reductions in carbon emissions in the transport and power sectors and provide access to electricity to 600 million people who currently do not have it, the report said.

In Phase 2 of the New Energy New York project, SUNY Binghamton and its partners’ proposal will focus on expanding research, development, testing and workforce assets to meet demand from the emerging battery manufacturing industry in southern and upstate New York. If fully funded, the project estimates that over a 10-year period, up to 8,000 new direct jobs would be created through this effort, with the potential to support or maintain thousands more indirect jobs, according to officials.

The deadline for phase 2 is March 15, 2022.

Smriti jacob is the editor of Rochester Beacon.


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