Ohio's Case Western Reserve University's Great Lakes Institute for Energy Innovation has received a $3.6 million grant from the Cleveland Foundation, a philanthropic organization. The grant will allow the institute to focus on three major areas of research: renewable power, energy storage and efficiency of larger energy systems, according to the university.
The Cleveland Foundation funds will support recruitment of new faculty for the institute. In addition, faculty and researchers at the institute will also develop outreach programs in science, technology, engineering and math for Cleveland-area primary and secondary students and teachers.
The institute is leading the Great Lakes Wind Energy Research Center, a resource for government and industry to innovate, test and deploy new alternative energy technologies that efficiently and durably harness wind power.
In August, Case Western Reserve committed $200,000 to the Board of Commissioners of Cuyahoga County and the county's Great Lakes Energy Development Task Force to partially sponsor a study that would determine the feasibility of developing a wind energy research center on Lake Erie. Currently, Case Western Reserve is working with the task force, chaired by Cuyahoga County prosecutor Bill Mason, and with other universities, government laboratories and industry, to conduct the study.
If the study determines it to be feasible, the Great Lakes Wind Energy Research Center – co-managed by the university – would be comprised of an approximately 20 MW offshore wind turbine project located in Lake Erie and an affiliated research center to facilitate industry testing of next-generation utility-scale wind technologies.