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US DoE renews PowerAmerica funding


Continues investment in wide bandgap semiconductor technologies to drive electrification and reduce emissions

The US Department of Energy (DOE)’s Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO) has renewed funding for PowerAmerica, DOE’s first Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institute.

PowerAmerica will receive an initial $8 million, with potential funding across four more years to follow, to continue advancing manufacturing of next-generation WBG semiconductors, in particular SiC and GaN, for power electronics.

“The work PowerAmerica—and its 82 member organisations spanning industry, academia, and national labs—is doing to galvanize commercialisation of high-performance power electronics is invaluable to our clean energy future,” said AMMTO director Chris Saldaña. “PowerAmerica has catalysed an innovation ecosystem that touches nearly every sector up and down each supply chain.”

Raleigh-based PowerAmerica commercialised more than ten WBG technologies over five years. To date, 40 percent of PowerAmerica’s 60 projects have reached, or are set to reach, commercial status. Since launching in 2014, PowerAmerica has also trained more than; 400 masters and PhD students, 300 short course attendees, 1,800 tutorial participants, and 9,000 K-12 students in STEM programs, including 2,000 participants of hands-on trainings.

The new federal funding builds upon initial federal funding of $70 million, in addition to $81 million in cost share from its member partners, for a total of $151 million.

PowerAmerica is one of seven Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institutes supported by two of DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy program offices: the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO) and Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonisation Office (IEDO). In addition, PowerAmerica is one of the 16 member institutes of Manufacturing USA, a national network of manufacturing innovation institutes.

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