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Michigan’s Global Leadership in Advanced Battery Production Poised to Expand with New Announcement

Friday, Nov 30, 2012

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow joined Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and Michigan Economic Development Corporation CEO Mike Finney today to announce that Michigan's battery hub proposal (in partnership with Argonne National Lab) has been selected by the Department of Energy, further cementing Michigan's global leadership role in the advanced battery industry. The announcement will bring two new advanced battery research facilities to Michigan, one at Michigan State University's Bio-economy Institute in Holland and one on the University of Michigan's campus in Ann Arbor.

Sen. Stabenow authored legislation to create new coordinated national battery research facilities that bring university and private sector research efforts together to develop new battery technologies. These technologies will create new products that spur economic growth and reduce the nation's dependence on foreign oil. The legislation created a national competition of applicants vying to house new advanced battery facilities. Stabenow then partnered with the MEDC to coordinate a coalition of Michigan universities and businesses from across the state to participate in and win the competition.

Senator Stabenow said: "When we make things here and grow things here, we create jobs here in Michigan. Michigan is leading the country in clean energy innovation and advanced battery technologies, creating jobs and reducing our dependence on foreign oil. These new hubs will bring together Michigan's innovative businesses and universities from across the state to create more breakthroughs in advanced battery technologies right here in Michigan."

Secretary Chu said: "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. Based on the tremendous advances that have been made in the past few years, there are very good reasons to believe that advanced battery technologies can and will play an increasingly valuable role in strengthening America's energy and economic security by reducing our oil dependence, upgrading our aging power grid, and allowing us to take greater advantage of intermittent energy sources like wind and solar."

Mike Finney, President and CEO of MEDC, said: "Michigan's reinvention is taking many forms, and this new partnership demonstrates our state's ongoing automotive, R&D, technology and university leadership. Working with Argonne National Labs creates a new base of support for our businesses, will help launch new ventures, and ultimately, create more and better jobs here. Michigan is a global leader for making things and making things work because we continue to innovate better than anyone else."

Michigan's new advanced battery facilities will be part of the Argonne National Laboratory's Joint Center for Energy Storage Research Advanced Battery Hub, which includes labs, universities and businesses across the country. Argonne developed the battery technology used in the Chevy Volt. The three facilities will receive a total of $120 million over the next five years.

Partners in Michigan's coalition that successfully competed to secure the research facilities for Michigan include the University of Michigan, Dow Chemical, and Johnson Controls. Other universities and businesses from across the state will participate in research activities at the new battery centers.


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