The US Departments of Energy (DOE) and Transportation (DOT) announced a collaboration to accelerate research, development, demonstration, and deployment of innovative smart transportation systems and alternative fuel technologies.
The agencies formalized this collaborative relationship through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that was unveiled at a symposium this week called Achieving Zero-Emission Mobility: The Role of Innovative Electric Vehicle Companies, hosted by the University of California Center on Economic Competitiveness in Transportation in Berkeley, California.
The MOU will facilitate coordinated actions to leverage the two agencies’ expertise in transportation energy technology and safety systems to accelerate analysis, tools, and applications of those technologies.
This joint initiative follows DOT Secretary Foxx’s announcement of the Smart City Challenge (earlier post), which aims to select one US city to be awarded up to $40 million in Federal Highway Administration money and $10 million from the department’s private sector partner, Vulcan Inc., for demonstrating and deploying vision-forward smart city and mobility solutions.
This city will become the US’ first to integrate innovative technologies such as self-driving cars, connected vehicles, and smart sensors into their transportation network. After receiving 78 applications, DOT has chosen seven Smart City Challenge finalists to receive a $100,000 grant to refine their full proposals.
DOE intends to provide in-kind support of DOT’s Smart City Challenge in the form of expertise and resources including DOE’s extensive experience in transportation electrification and alternative fuel vehicle fleet deployment through the DOE SMART Mobility consortium, EV Everywhere, and Clean Cities.