Press Release

Secretary Brouillette Announces ARIES — a Visionary Energy Research Platform

GOLDEN, CO (August 12, 2020) – U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette today announced the launch of the Advanced Research on Integrated Energy Systems (ARIES) platform at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). ARIES is a cutting-edge research platform that will allow NREL researchers and the scientific community to address the fundamental challenges of integrated energy systems at scale.

“As our Nation’s energy system continues to undergo dramatic transformations, there is a growing need for research on how to best integrate all of our energy resources on the grid in order to provide the most reliable and affordable electricity to the American people,” said Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette at the ARIES launch today at NREL. “ARIES is a flexible platform that provides the opportunity to develop and evaluate new technologies at a size and scale that matters. The Trump Administration is committed to advancing the next generation of energy technologies through platforms like ARIES, which aim to create a better American energy system.”

ARIES represents a substantial scale-up in experimentation capability from existing research platforms, allowing for research at the 20MW level. It will make it possible to understand the impact and get the most value from the millions of new devices—such as electric vehicles, renewable generation, hydrogen, energy storage, and grid-interactive efficient buildings —that are being connected to the grid daily.

The scale of the platform will also make it possible to consider opportunities and risks with the growing interdependencies between the power system and other infrastructure like natural gas, transportation, water, and telecommunications.

“ARIES will enable DOE and industry to understand the technical, operational, and financial impacts of new technologies in a rapidly evolving energy system,” said Assistant Secretary for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Daniel R. Simmons.

ARIES creates a research environment to investigate challenges in the areas of energy storage, power electronics, hybrid energy systems, future energy infrastructure, and cybersecurity—five research areas of critical importance.

The platform will leverage existing capabilities at NREL’s Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF), new capabilities at NREL’s Flatirons Campus, and a virtual emulation environment connecting hardware assets at these sites with millions of digitally emulated devices. A high-speed data link will interconnect ARIES with other national laboratories and research partners to enable access to a greater set of research capabilities.

“The ARIES platform will lay the foundation for the next generation of energy systems that are resilient, reliable, secure, affordable, and clean,” said NREL Director Martin Keller. “We are thrilled to welcome this new research capability to NREL and look forward to transforming the future energy landscape with our partners through ARIES-enabled research.”

Over this past year, NREL worked in close collaboration with EERE to develop ARIES. Additional guidance was provided by DOE’s Office of Electricity and the Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response—as well as by other national laboratories, energy industry leaders, and academic partners.

In September, NREL will host an industry workshop to provide an overview of the platform to interested industry partners and share collaboration opportunities. More information can be found HERE.