Duke Energy And Progress Energy Contribute to Advanced Transportation Center at NCSU; Focus on Plug-in Hybrids
North Carolina Governor Mike Easley announced the creation of an Advanced Transportation Energy Center (ATEC) at North Carolina State University. The center, a public-private partnership to include the university, Progress Energy and Duke Energy, is to focus on research to advance more widespread use of plug-in hybrid vehicles, particularly the development of a reliable and dependable source of portable power for electric vehicles.
The ATEC will seek to:
Develop batteries that are more powerful and less costly (it currently costs about $10,000 to convert a hybrid to a plug in. The goal is to cut that cost to a more consumer-friendly amount); and
Create the infrastructure to make use of electric vehicles, including convenient charging stations, etc.
The announcement came during the annual Institute for Emerging Issues’ conference: “North Carolina’s Energy Futures; Realizing a State of Opportunity.”
The ATEC will cost an estimated $5 million to start, with an additional $1 million required annually. Duke and Progress will each invest $1.5 million in the project over five years.
The Institute for Emerging Issues (IEI) characterizes itself as a “think-and-do tank”focused on tackling big issues that affect North Carolina’s future growth and prosperity.