New DOE funding opportunity looks to future of electric grid

June 3, 2024

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) that will provide up to $31 million to support solar power research, development and demonstration projects.

The Solar Technologies’ Rapid Integration and Validation for Energy Systems (STRIVES) initiative is a collaborative effort between DOE’s Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) and Wind Energy Technologies Office (WETO) that will focus on software simulation tools for power systems and new business models for efficient distribution systems.

Widespread adoption of clean energy technologies such as solar will require transitioning to a digitally managed, decentralized and distributed electric grid. The tools and methodologies supported through the STRIVES initiative are expected to ensure the grid’s reliability, resilience and security.

STRIVE Topic Areas

  • The Robust Experimentation and Advanced Learning for Distribution System Operators will offer up to $3 million to eight to 10 projects each to: Design and perform field demonstrations of distribution system operator models that consider technology development and the roles of non-traditional stakeholders in potential distribution electricity services and markets.
  • Improved Simulation Tools for Large-Scale IBR Transient and Dynamic Studies will award up to $2.5 million to four to five projects to: Develop and demonstrate software tools and methodologies to improve the ability of power systems engineers to accurately and efficiently model the dynamics of power systems with large amounts of geographically dispersed inverter-based resources.

Additionally, DOE is compiling a Teaming Partner List to form project teams for this FOA, allowing organizations interested in participating in a project to share that interest with other applicants and consider possible partnerships. The Teaming Partner List will be available on the EERE eXCHANGE website and will be regularly updated.

The FOA is part of a broader effort led by the DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) that expects to issue multiple FOAs totaling more than $100 million. These funds will support field demonstration projects and other research focused on improving the planning and operations of the electric grid.

The other FOAs involved are:

  • Connected Communities 2.0 through the Building Technologies Office: This FOA will expand on foundational approaches from existing Connected Communities projects to create solutions for the grid edge, where distribution transitions between utilities and customers, at community scale, including buildings and transportation, community renewables and storage technologies.
  • SuperTruck Charge through the Vehicle Technologies Office: This FOA will address challenges associated with vehicle-to-grid integration and large-scale charging installations for medium- and heavy-duty trucks.

Photo by Zbynek Burival on Unsplash

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