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New CAES energy research lab dedicated

February 22, 2009
ISU Marketing and Communications

On Feb. 20, Idaho National Laboratory and the state of Idaho – through its three public research universities that are partners in the Center for Advanced Energy Studies (CAES) – dedicated a new 55,000-square-foot, $17 million energy research laboratory on the banks of the Snake River in Idaho Falls.  

Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch" Otter and the entire Idaho congressional delegation joined INL, Idaho State University, the University of Idaho, Boise State University and the U.S. Department of Energy in officially opening the doors to the new facility dedicated to education, training and research in pursuit of solutions to critical energy problems.

Gov. Otter speaking at CAES dedication.“For six decades now, INL has been putting Idaho at the cutting edge of energy technology,” Gov. Otter said.  “Now, CAES is helping to ensure that Idaho is leading the drive to address our nation’s energy challenges today and into the future. The state of Idaho is proud to be a partner in this collaborative enterprise that will be such an important part of advancing the cause of energy independence.”

Acting Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Energy Shane Johnson represented the Department of Energy and spoke of the significant impact that government-university partnerships have on energy research and the ability to meet increasing demands for energy around the world.

CAES Director Harold Blackman emceed the dedication program that included a welcome from INL Director John Grossenbacher.

Also highlighting the program were remarks from U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo, U.S. Sen. James Risch, U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson, U.S. Rep. Walt Minnick and the three Idaho university presidents.

“This facility is not only a great accomplishment,” said ISU President Arthur Vailas, “but it has many other extensions in the great thing we’re doing in energy here in Idaho that will affect the world.”

At the CAES groundbreaking ceremony in February 2007, Sen. Crapo noted that Idaho is an ideal location for this new center, which focuses on new energy technologies and sources.  Recently elected Sen. Risch was Idaho governor when the CAES building was started and played an important role in providing state support for the new facility.  

Rep. Simpson, in comments during the groundbreaking ceremony in 2007, emphasized that the CAES building advances the vision of establishing a collaborative institution to conduct vital national energy research.

Battelle Memorial Institute President and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Wadsworth underscored the commitment that BMI and its subsidiary, Battelle Energy Alliance, have pledged to CAES and its key missions.

University presidents each addressed specific areas of research, including:

•    ISU President Vailas concerning nuclear energy research,

•    BSU President Robert Kustra on energy policy formulation, and

•    U of I Interim President Steven Daley-Laursen on the energy research mission.

At the end of the formal program, Blackman presented a plaque commemorating the dedication of the new CAES facility.  

CAES is creating a unique and collaborative environment for the future, including cross-organizational and peer-to-peer technical collaboration. It addresses science, engineering and technology development critical to U.S. and global energy needs. CAES research focuses on nuclear science, materials for energy application, bioenergy, carbon management and policy.

The research agenda at CAES is helping to educate the next generation of scientists and engineers. It is fostering collaborations and interdisciplinary studies and makes its research and development facilities, and those of INL, available to a network of universities.

By collaborating with energy researchers at local and national universities, key industrial partners and a variety of other federal agencies, CAES offers a premier international facility for promoting and performing research and revitalizing education and training in energy science, engineering, technology, policy conceptualization and related disciplines.  

Benefits of the new Center for Advanced Energy Studies

995 University Boulevard, Idaho Falls, Idaho

The benefits to DOE, the public, its universities and industrial partners, INL and other federal agencies will include:

•    Fostering public dialogue, communications and innovation for the difficult energy decisions of the next decade,

•    Supporting sound energy policy leading the U.S. toward improved energy security,

•    Providing organizational support and infrastructure for industry and academia to access INL and its unique research capabilities,

•    Developing partnerships with local Idaho companies to expand research, technology and economic development,

•    Appropriately integrating the research and educational capabilities of participating institutions to strengthen existing DOE programs,

•    Supporting directly DOE’s new University Program and the Advanced Test Reactor National Scientific User Facility,  

•    Expediting the commercialization of advanced energy-related technology through the co-location and collaboration of government-university-industry energy-related efforts,

•    Supporting Idaho’s Office of Energy Resources, and

•    Supporting the development of the future, high-technology energy work force through internships, as well as post-graduate and faculty research.

Interesting Facts about the new CAES Building

•    Positioned on the banks of the Snake River, it is located on state property adjacent to University Place and at the end of a new avenue called University Boulevard (address: 995 University Boulevard).

•    The two-story edifice is about 55,000 square feet and cost nearly $17 million for its construction involves multiple sources, including state of Idaho and Idaho State University bonds with guarantees from Battelle Memorial Institute and Washington Group International.

•    Projected recipient of gold certification from the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System.

Plaque dedicating the Center for Advanced Energy Studies reads:

 “Advancing Energy Research and Education”

CAES is a public/private partnership that includes: the state of Idaho through its academic research institutions, Boise State University, Idaho State University and the University of Idaho; the federal government through the Department of Energy; and a private entity, Battelle Energy Alliance, which manages Idaho National Laboratory. CAES integrates resources, capabilities and expertise to create new researcher capabilities, expand researcher-to-researcher collaborations, and enhance energy-related educational opportunities. The vision and commitment to make CAES a reality was made possible by the state of Idaho, Battelle Memorial Institute, URS Washington Division and the U.S. Department of Energy.

Keith Arterburn, 208-526-4845, Keith.Arterburn@inl.gov   
Reuel Smith, 208-526-3733, 521-4910, Reuel.Smith@inl.gov


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