Clean Energy Trust to Focus on Commercialization in Its Role with Argonne-Led Energy Storage Research and Development Hub

Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:30pm EST

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Clean Energy Trust to Focus on Commercialization in Its Role with Argonne-Led Energy Storage Research and Development Hub

Joint Center for Energy Storage Research Sets Aggressive Tech Development Goals

Clean Energy Trust, the Midwest’s leading clean tech business accelerator, is partnered with Argonne National Laboratory on a $120 million US Department of Energy funded battery and energy storage hub, it announced today.

The organization will work with researchers, investors and entrepreneurs to bring new technology developed through the hub to market.

The hub, known as the Joint Center for Energy Storage and Research (JCESR) received a $120 million award from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). JCESR is a collaborative effort among leading researchers, entrepreneurs and industry with members representing national laboratories, academia and business. JCESR will focus on rapid research development and commercialization of revolutionary, clean electrochemical energy storage technologies that will support next generation vehicles and the nation’s electric grid.

“Chicago is poised to become a living laboratory for electric vehicles and next generation grid technologies as a result of this incredible research collaboration," said Amy Francetic, CET executive director. "CET is enormously pleased to be working on this groundbreaking program, and we look forward to connecting researchers with the mentors and investors who can commercialize their technologies.”

JCESR will identify cost-effective, market-ready clean technology to harness energy created from renewable sources. The long-term goals for the project are to improve the reliability and efficiency of the electrical grid, renewable energy integration, and to reduce dependence on foreign oil by improving batteries for electric and hybrid vehicles.

“This is a partnership between world leading scientists and world leading companies, committed to ensuring that the advanced battery technologies the world needs will be invented and built right here in America,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu.

Michael Polsky, Invenergy CEO and CET co-chair, noted that the award is indicative of the Midwest’s leadership in energy innovation. “Illinois has become the nexus for clean energy research, development and deployment,” Polsky said. “Selecting Argonne and our consortium for the hub reinforces how quickly the Midwest ecosystem has moved to the next level.”

“Bringing together the nation’s brightest minds in energy storage for this endeavor has both local and global significance,” said Nick Pritzker, CET co-chair. “This remarkable team led by George Crabtree will ensure that America is at the leading edge of the growing global market for battery technologies.”

JCESR is the latest of DOE’s four interdisciplinary and highly collaborative Energy Innovation Hubs. Each hub addresses a specific national energy challenge. DOE will provide JCESR with up to $120 million over five years. JCESR will be centered at Argonne, outside of Chicago. The State of Illinois will contribute as much as $35 million to construct a 45,000-square-foot home for the project.

“JCESR’s aggressive goal is to develop revolutionary energy storage technologies with five times the energy density of today’s systems at one-fifth the cost in five years,” explained George Crabtree, JCESR director. “JCESR will speed up the innovation cycle by engaging industry from the start. Industrial partners are critical in making sure we ask the right research questions so that we can shorten the path from laboratory innovation to technological development to commercial deployment.”

JCESR partners include:


The Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR) is a major public-private partnership that integrates U.S. Department of Energy national laboratories, major research universities and leading industrial companies to help advance cutting-edge energy storage and battery technologies that can be used to improve the reliability and the efficiency of the electrical grid, to better integrate clean, renewable energy technologies as part of the electrical system, and for use in electric and hybrid vehicles that will reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil. JCESR is located outside of Chicago on the campus of The U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory.

About CET

The Clean Energy Trust was founded by prominent business and civic leaders to accelerate the pace of clean energy innovation in the Midwest. The Trust is supported by grants from the U.S. Department of Energy, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, the Joyce Foundation, the Chicago Community Trust, the Small Business Administration and donations from over 50 investors, corporations, universities and trade groups. For more information, visit

Aileron Communications
Sheridan Chaney, 312.629.9400
Clean Energy Trust
Amy Francetic, 847-899-2225