The US Department of Energy (DOE) has launched an energy storage “challenge” to accelerate the development, commercialisation, and utilisation of next-generation energy storage technologies and establish the US as a global leader in the technology.

The so-called “Grand Challenge” builds on the $158 million Advanced Energy Storage Initiative announced in President Trump’s 2020 budget request and aims to build “a secure domestic manufacturing supply chain that is independent of foreign sources of critical materials, by 2030”, DOE said in a statement.

“Energy storage is key to capturing the full value of our diverse energy resources,” said US Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette. “Through this Grand Challenge, we will deploy the Department’s extensive resources and expertise to address the technology development, commercialization, manufacturing, valuation, and workforce challenges to position the US for global leadership in the energy storage technologies of the future.”

The initiative will include a range of R&D funding opportunities, prizes, partnerships and other programmes. Its goals include technology development, technology transfer, policy development, manufacturing and supply chain, and workforce training.

As a first step, DOE will soon release requests for information (RFI) soliciting stakeholder feedback on the key questions and issues the Challenge seeks to address. DOE will also host a series of workshops with key stakeholders to share information about various storage technologies, learn more about current barriers to deployment, and help shape the work that will bring those technologies to market.

The work will help to create a roadmap to 2030 for “a broad suite of storage and flexibility challenges”, DOE added.