Renewable Energy Research Focus Areas
The research focus of the renewable energy research program has shifted towards applied research that addresses issues with the deployment and integration of renewable energy technologies. In order to maximize the benefit to California electricity and natural gas customers, top priority has been placed on technologies and techniques to deploy and optimize renewable energy systems at three key market scales:
Classically, the primary goal of the renewable energy research program has been to invest in renewable energy research, development and demonstration projects that advance renewable energy technologies towards commercialization. Investments have been made to advance science and technology for the following renewable resources:
- Biomass energy,
- Geothermal energy,
- Solar energy,
- Wind energy,
- Combined heat and power (CHP) and
- Small hydroelectricity and ocean energy.
Current PIER-funded technology development projects are focused on technologies that assist with the deployment and integration of renewable energy. Some examples of technology development and demonstration projects that have been awarded include:
- Demonstration of advanced smart grid control systems,
- Dairy bio-digesters with integrated combined heat and power systems and
- Environmental mitigation technologies for solar energy.
Additionally, research is conducted to support the fulfillment and development of policies that enable sustainable renewable energy generation, integration, security, and use.