The Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy, or ARPA-E, is the arm of the U.S. Department of Energy which has its pulse on cutting edge clean energy and cleantech research and development. One way it does this is to bring together the diverse community centered around this on-going innovation, including “venture capital investors, technology entrepreneurs, large and small corporations with an interest in clean energy technologies, policymakers from the Administration and Congress, and government officials from the Department of Energy and ARPA-E.”
Where do they all gather to collaborate? The second annual ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit, going on near Washington D.C. Feb. 28 – March 2.
Present at this event will be hundreds of organizations and individuals looking to brainstorm, do deals and push forth the agenda of clean energy. Lots of heavy hitter names will be in attendance, including Energy Secretary Steven Chu, former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bank of America chairman Charles Holiday and Lisa Murkowski, the U.S. Senator from Alaska.
Like any conference of this kind, there will be plenty of keynote speeches, networking sessions and in depth technical workshops on a variety of related clean energy topics. Also of note for this event will be the Energy Technology Innovation Showcase, which gathers up under one roof a mix of groups that include ARPA-E award winners and finalists. In order to keep it from being just a pure private sector bonanza, the ARPA-E made available to research organizations and government laboratories “a special showcase package to encourage these groups to promote their new technologies, research programs, and R&D services at the 2011 event.”
Just who and what kind of technologies will be on display at this showcase? A look at the most updated list tells an interesting tale of just how cutting edge much of this is. Of the over 200 companies and research organizations showing off, 75 are said to be in the prototype stage, 66 in concept mode and nine ready for market. Carbon capture technologies will be the most represented, with other top forms of cleantech including grid-scale energy storage and renewable power.
We will be on the ground at the ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit next week, interviewing some of these cutting edge companies and research organizations as well as providing Twitter coverage of interesting talks and lectures. Who knows – maybe even Energy Secretary Chu will take a moment to talk to us as well. We look forward to seeing, and sharing with you, what the cleantech of tomorrow is looking to do to forward our nation’s clean economy agenda.