Purdue, Crane to work together on energy research

September 14, 2010

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University and the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division will team up to conduct research and development in the area of energy storage and power management.

Under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement, Purdue and NSWC Crane will work on a broad range of projects designed to provide state-of-the-art energy storage and power management technologies for U.S. combat forces.

Among the planned research areas are battery efficiency and safety; high-fidelity sensors for energy storage systems; mitigation of lithium battery fires; hydrogen storage research; bio material growth, harvesting and processing for power; and fuel cell advancements.

"This agreement will bring together top researchers from both Purdue and NSWC Crane to work in the key area of energy and power systems," said Richard Buckius, Purdue vice president for research. "We expect results that will benefit U.S. forces and have broader implications going forward."

Kyle Werner, NSWC Crane Energy, Power & Interconnect Technologies division manager, said: “This agreement will serve as a catalyst to develop advanced energy solutions which are in high demand in today’s military climate. It ultimately will accelerate joint research into technology that is transitioned to the war fighter.”

Purdue's tasks will include conducting activities that explore the basic sciences related to the research areas; developing modeling capabilities for the Department of Defense; providing access to high-end analytical instrumentation; and providing research and development studies or reports of interest to the Navy.

"This agreement is an example of Purdue's commitment to developing defense-oriented centers of excellence," said R. Byron Pipes, director of the Purdue Institute for Defense Innovation and John L. Bray Distinguished Professor Of Engineering. "Mobilizing our technical assets in support of the country's defense needs is a key focus of our strategic plan."

A broad range of Purdue faculty will work on the projects under the leadership of James Caruthers and Joseph Pekny, chemical engineering professors, and Eric Dietz, director of the Purdue Homeland Security Institute and an associate professor of computer technology.

Through its Strategic Missions Center, NSWC Crane will develop test and evaluation data related to energy storage and power management; provide access to power and energy assets, test equipment and other components for collaborative research; and document responses to completed evaluations and tests.

The agreement is part of a strategy to develop a broad-based, collaborative relationship between Purdue and NSWC Crane.

Writer:  Judith Barra Austin, 765-494-2432, jbaustin@purdue.edu

Sources:   Richard Buckius, 765-494-6209, rbuckius@purdue.edu  

                   Byron Pipes, 765-494-5767, bpipes@purdue.edu  

                  John Dement, NSWC Crane Office of Research and Technology Applications/Technology, Transfer Lead, Science and Technology Division, 812-854-4164, john.dement@navy.mil