South Carolina HBCUs part of $10M US Department of Energy renewable energy project
Posted By: Sofía Montiel on September 28, 2023 |
ORANGEBURG COUNTY, S.C. — Three of South Carolina's Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) will be involved in a nationwide project that has been awarded $10 million from the US Department of Energy. The Second life sMARt sysTems (SMART) project will work to solve the problem of the growing stockpile of electric vehicle lithium-ion batteries by finding ways to repurpose the batteries, giving them a second life with high value per kilowatt hour.
Smartville Inc. will coordinate the project, using the company's Smartville 360 energy storage systems across six locations in four states -- California, Georgia, Louisiana, and South Carolina. The Smartville 360 uses domestically sourced high quality tier-1 automotive lithium-ion batteries from retired electric vehicles.
According to Smartville Inc, the systems will provide grid resiliency and backup power while simultaneously helping lower energy costs for senior centers, low-income multi-family affordable housing complexes and EV charging facilities in San Diego, Atlanta, New Orleans, Orangeburg and Denmark, S.C. In total, more than 7 MWh of battery capacity will be installed.
Repurposing the lithium-ion batteries -- made from cobalt, lithium, and nickel, which are scarce and nonrenewable resources -- ensures that fewer minerals are mined and less carbon is generated from new battery manufacturing.
In South Carolina, the project installation will be in partnership with Denmark Technical College, Claflin University, and South Carolina State University and will include high-tech career employment training at the schools.
Other locations involved in the SMART project include Dillard University in New Orleans, and the HBCU Community Development Action Coalition as well as George McKinney Retirement Center, JBM Energy Solutions, Southern Company and Georgia Power, Cox Automotive and Cox Mobility, Craft Electric Inc., Luna Development, Holt Brothers Construction, and Endera Motors.
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