HORIBA commits $9M to UCI for new institute to focus on better connectivity between transportation and energy sectors
HORIBA Group, a leading global provider of analytical and measurement systems, has committed $9 million to the Advanced Power and Energy Program at the University of California, Irvine to establish the Horiba Institute for Mobility and Connectivity.
HIMAC will focus research and education efforts on combining formerly disparate energy and transportation sectors into an integrated and complementary system. Its faculty, staff and students will work to simultaneously address the environmental impacts of climate change and air quality, energy independence and security, and the affordability of fuel and electricity for consumers.
In addition to HORIBA’s gift, UCI’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Office of the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor will provide funds for staffing and ongoing activities at the new entity.
HIMAC scientists and engineers will pursue solutions to three grand challenges facing the future of energy and the environment. The first is to develop vehicles, fuel supply chains and mobility systems that emit no greenhouse gases or pollutants that cause smog, acid rain and other health hazards. Second is to connect zero-emission modes of transport with an electric grid that incorporates renewable wind and solar resources at a much higher level than exists today. Third is to invent the next generation of conveyances that can sense their surroundings, “talk” with one another and communicate with the infrastructure.
HIMAC, to be housed in a state-of-the-art facility in UCI’s Engineering Gateway building, will be a focal point of interdisciplinary research at the university, bringing together experts in engineering, physical sciences, information and computer sciences, social sciences and business. Specific areas of study will include electrochemistry, renewable fuels and energy storage.