The U.S. Air Force plans to select research proposals on energy storage and infrastructure modernization to mitigate reliance on fossil fuels. The Air Force said Friday that its AFWERX innovation arm partnered with Air Force Futures to launch the Reimagining Energy for the Department of Defense Challenge in September 2020.
Research work under the Energy Challenge focuses on establishing resilient infrastructure for energy production and storage, which can be implemented immediately or on a long-term basis.
AFWERX and AF Futures downselected 179 proposals following a virtual showcase in Feb. 2021, which saw 1,895 participants representing the academic, public, private and nonprofit sectors. Participating companies were also able to connect with venture capitalists and funding entities as part of the challenge.
In addition, the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) is looking to issue contract awards covering research areas such as renewable energy, battery technology and electrical equipment in line with the Energy Challenge.
“It is through these ongoing collaborative events we are forging strategic partnerships that will have impacts reaching far and wide, and continue to break department and industry barriers,” the Air Force said.