Notice of Intent Invites US Manufacturers to Develop and Commercialize Distributed Wind Energy Technology

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Upcoming Competitiveness Improvement Project Workshop Will Prepare Attendees for Developing Competitive Proposals

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has issued a notice of intent under the Competitiveness Improvement Project (CIP) calling for U.S. manufacturers of small- and medium-sized wind turbine technology to develop project ideas and teams in preparation for a 2024 request for proposals (RFP).

NREL also invites interested parties to register to attend a three-day virtual workshop to learn about applying to CIP on November 28–30, 2023, at 12–2:30 p.m. MST.

Two wind turbines in a field in front of mountains
NREL has issued a Competitiveness Improvement Project notice of intent in advance of a 2024 funding solicitation. The project supports manufacturers of distributed wind energy technology, such as the Bergey Excel 15 (left) and QED Wind Power PHX 20 (right) wind turbines recently installed at NREL’s Flatirons Campus. Photo by Ian Baring-Gould, NREL.

Managed by NREL on behalf of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Wind Energy Technologies Office, CIP awards cost-shared subcontracts and national laboratory technical support to component suppliers and manufacturers of small- and medium-sized wind turbines.

“Over the past decade, CIP has played a key role in reducing the costs of distributed wind energy technologies to achieve parity with other distributed energy resources, such as roof-mounted solar, while increasing the number of certified wind turbines available on the U.S. market,” said Brent Summerville, NREL’s CIP lead. “Through this notice of intent and upcoming workshop, NREL is preparing distributed wind manufacturers to take part in the next CIP solicitation.”

Since 2012, NREL has awarded 64 subcontracts to 26 companies, totaling $15.4 million of DOE funding, while leveraging $7.9 million in additional private-sector investment. By working with industry to advance and accelerate commercialization and deployment of distributed wind technology, CIP helps expand where it can be used to provide local energy services—with or without being paired with other renewable technologies, such as solar and battery storage systems. This increases resilience, reduces local energy costs, and helps meet local clean energy goals.

CIP supports innovation to advance wind energy as a low-cost distributed generation technology option by:

  • Reducing technology costs
  • Supporting product innovation
  • Optimizing wind turbines for distributed applications
  • Ensuring that distributed energy consumers have wind technology options that are certified for performance and quality
  • Developing advanced manufacturing processes to reduce hardware costs and meet growing demand
  • Supporting distributed wind technology commercialization.

Workshop Supports Successful CIP Proposals

The November 2023 virtual workshop will present an overview of CIP and review topic areas, evaluation criteria, testing and certification requirements, and laboratory-based technical support opportunities.

“Designed specifically for companies interested in applying to the 2024 CIP solicitation, this workshop will help attendees understand the RFP process and criteria in preparation for submitting on-target proposals,” Summerville said. “We will also review new 2024 CIP funding-round requirements—project concept papers and elements of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility.”

Speakers will cover those and a variety of other topic areas, including:

  • Previous CIP solicitation topics and guidance on which potential topic areas may be the most appropriate for different turbine technology development stages
  • Merit criteria and expectations for information to be included in proposals
  • Overview of applicable electrical and wind turbine standards
  • Technical support opportunities
  • Design, testing, and certification requirements for distributed wind turbines
  • Contracting requirements and the RFP process.

NREL encourages workshop participants to register for the virtual 2023 CIP workshop in advance.

Learn more about CIP and NREL’s distributed wind energy research. And be sure to subscribe to NREL’s wind energy newsletter for more news like this.

By Carol Laurie, Article courtesy of NREL.


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