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US Army awards $7m in clean energy contract for emergency power supply

CTBR Staff Writer Published 15 November 2012

A team led by the US-based Burns and McDonnell Engineering Company has secured a $7m contract from the US Army Corps of Engineers to demonstrate the integration of electric vehicles, generators and solar arrays to supply emergency power for Fort Carson, Colorado.

The team includes non-profit entity Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) will be responsible for the construction of a microgrid that employs the existing electrical infrastructure at the Army post.

The plan is called smart power infrastructure demonstration for energy reliability and security (spiders) program is aimed to make these installations more energy efficient and secure with the Integration of a 2MW photovoltaic (PV) array, diesel generator sets and electric vehicles to provide a self-contained, energy-sustainable capability during electrical grid disruptions.

SwRI will develop specialized software to aggregate and manage a fleet of electric vehicles as energy storage devices, as well as helping to develop interfaces between the vehicles and their charging equipment based on the newly emerging SAE J1772 DC Combo Connector II fast-charging technology standard.

Commenting on the contract SwRI Engine, Emissions and Vehicle Research Division co-researcher Joe Redfield said, "This project will be one of the first large-scale demonstrations of the new Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) standard-based DC fast-charge technology."