The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) engages in multiple activities to enhance the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative (CEMI), including competitive analysis and strategies, dialogues and summits, energy productivity, and investments in clean energy manufacturing.
CEMI develops competitiveness analysis and strategies that inform research and development (R&D) investments and other efforts needed to address key barriers to growing U.S. clean energy manufacturing competitiveness. This unprecedented competitiveness analysis evaluates the costs of producing clean energy products in the United States compared to competitor nations to understand factory location decisions and identify key drivers to U.S. clean energy manufacturing competitiveness.
The development of competitiveness analysis and strategies inform R&D investments and other efforts needed to address key barriers to growing U.S. clean energy manufacturing competitiveness. Of note, the U.S. Department of Energy's Clean Energy Manufacturing Analysis Center (CEMAC) provides objective analysis and up-to-date data on global clean energy manufacturing. Policymakers and industry leaders seek CEMAC insights to inform choices to promote economic growth and the transition to a clean energy economy.
Research and Development Innovation
Through CEMI, EERE has increased funding for manufacturing R&D across the board, specifically with the goal of growing the clean energy manufacturing industry in the United States.
The Technologist in Residence pilot will catalyze strong national laboratory-industry relationships that will lead to high-impact collaborative R&D, and will develop mechanisms to help interested companies more easily connect and form relationships with national laboratories moving forward.
Innovative manufacturing projects, included under the Advanced Manufacturing Office's Research and Development program, will provide a competitive funding opportunity for transformational manufacturing processes and materials across multiple technologies.
The National Network of Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) will be comprised of public-private partnerships that will serve as regional hubs of manufacturing excellence, which will help to make our manufacturers more competitive as well as encouraging investment in the United States. NNMI launched its pilot manufacturing innovation institute in Youngstown, Ohio.
Similarly, Manufacturing Demonstration Facilities are designed to provide the manufacturing community affordable access to advanced physical and virtual tools for rapidly demonstrating new manufacturing technologies and optimizing critical processes.
EERE has increased focus on and invested in energy productivity resources for manufacturers, such as technology and practices for growing U.S. manufacturing energy productivity and competitiveness, including a suite of technical assistance and market leadership programs. This includes:
- Industrial Assessment Centers - offer no-cost energy efficiency centers for manufacturers
- Better Plants Challenge - engages U.S. manufacturers to reduce energy use by 25% over 10 years.
EERE has invested in specific clean energy technologies:
- Wind. Fabrication processes of longer blades as well as blade manufacturing R&D including advanced modular automation, advanced mold operations, and non-destructive inspection.
- Solar. Manufacturing development facilities and industry consortia to provide infrastructure for demonstrating, testing, optimizing, and manufacturing new technologies for photovoltaic technologies under the SunShot Initiative, SUNPATH, and High Impact PV Supply Chain R&D, aim to strengthen U.S. photovoltaic manufacturing by supporting improved yield and high-volume production.
- Vehicles. Production of low-cost carbon fiber and identification of manufacturing challenges in batteries, electric drive systems, and critical lightweight materials through the EV Everywhere Grand Challenge.
- Fuel Cells. High-volume manufacturing processes for low-cost, high-quality membrane-electrode assemblies.
- Buildings. Manufacturing R&D to reduce epitaxy manufacturing costs by 75% and set up OLED pilot manufacturing lines, as well as Solid-State Lighting R&D Manufacturing roadmapping to complement its existing manufacturing portfolio.
For advancing clean energy manufacturing, EERE engages stakeholders through the following:
- Regional and National Summits to gain input on national and regional priorities, identify key gaps and opportunities for growing U.S. clean energy manufacturing competitiveness, showcase U.S. clean energy manufacturing activity, and explore national and regional models addressing these priorities.
- New Partnerships to improve U.S. clean energy manufacturing competitiveness.
To further CEMI’s activities and help manufacturers succeed, EERE has developed the Clean Energy Manufacturing Federal Resource Guide.