Energy research consortium links Madison, Milwaukee
By Thomas Content of the Journal Sentinel
Energy-research initiatives in Madison and Milwaukee will combine efforts in a statewide consortium, Gov. Jim Doyle announced Tuesday.
The Center for Renewable Energy Systems in Madison and the Southeastern Wisconsin Energy Technology Research initiative will join together as a statewide group focused on innovation in technologies linked to power generation, the power grid and energy.
The southeastern Wisconsin initiative was formed last year to pool the research efforts of Milwaukee’s three engineering schools -- the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Marquette University and Milwaukee School of Engineering.
The combined group will be called the Clean Energy Generation, Transmission and Storage Systems Consortium, Doyle announced at the BIO 2010 International Convention in Chicago.
“It is crucial that Wisconsin develop and maintain a leadership role in these emerging energy technologies to provide the needed expertise to its companies,” Doyle said in a statement. “Enhanced R&D capacity, combined with the development of industry supply chains, will serve as an important tool to attract and retain high value-added business.”
The project will get $300,000 in seed capital for the first two years of operation from the state Office of Energy Independence. It is expected to leverage $37 million in combined sponsored research over a 10-year period.
The Madison-based Center for Renewable Energy Systems will be housed in the Wisconsin Energy Institute, a $50 million building project that will also house the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center.
“This new consortium will offer significant return on investment to industry by taking an energy systems perspective,” said Paul Peercy, dean of the UW-Madison College of Engineering. “Producing cleaner energy sources is just one part of the challenge. We need to better understand the interconnection between energy sources, energy storage, energy loads and their integration into the emerging national smart grid.”
Work will continue in Milwaukee on research projects being conducted at the three engineering schools that announced the local consortium last year in an initiative led by Michael Lovell, dean of the UW-Milwaukee College of Engineering and Applied Science.
“Building a stronger network of energy research expertise between Milwaukee and Madison institutions makes sense strategically and gives member companies access to a deeper pool of talent,” Lovell said.
Submitted by mbroeren on Thu, 2010-05-06 15:08