NY-BEST Opening Commercialization Center in Rochester

Representatives of the New York Battery and Energy Technology Consortium (NY-BEST) – a statewide consortium of battery and energy storage companies, universities and industry partners – have held a kick-off event to detail their plans to create a clean energy commercialization center at Eastman Business Park, where the center will be located.

“New York is a national leader in jobs in the battery sector, and is home to global leaders in energy storage technology research and development.  The NY-BEST Commercialization Center project here at Eastman Business Park will work directly with private sector companies and research institutions to translate the State’s extensive R&D assets into technology manufacturing and job growth right here in New York,” said Dr. William Acker, executive director of NY-BEST. “By creating a set of shared resources at this new Center, our companies will be better able to compete globally and the Center will act as a powerful beacon to the world that New York means business when it comes to developing and manufacturing advanced energy storage solutions,” Acker said.

Last December, the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council announced $3.5 million in State funding for NY-BEST to establish a commercialization center for advanced battery and energy storage at Eastman Business Park, where it will provide an array of services and access to equipment to accelerate the development and commercial viability of battery and energy storage technologies. Energy storage technologies include advanced batteries, ultracapacitors, fuel cells and other products.

At the community briefing, Dr. Acker presented leaders from the community, including business and government officials, with NY-BEST’s plans to bring the Center to fruition, including a phased project to retrofit Building 308 at the Eastman Business Park and install testing and prototyping equipment that will be used by the Center’s partnering companies.

“NY-BEST chose Eastman Business Park to establish this Center because of the facility’s multiple resources, including deep and strong expertise in coatings and roll-to-roll manufacturing, extensive and scaleable infrastructure and equipment, and a captive 125MW power plant on-site to facilitate large-scale system testing,” said Dr. Acker.

“The advanced battery and energy storage commercialization center has the potential to accelerate the transition from technology breakthrough to manufacturing growth of these promising technologies,” said Francis J. Murray, Jr., president and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). “In keeping with the governor’s clean-energy agenda, this would extend New York State’s leadership in energy storage, which NY-BEST is helping to foster.”

“In addition to the resources and amenities in a shared facility like Eastman Business Park, the Center’s design calls for a “hub and spoke” mode of operation, whereby specialized resources and facilities across New York State will be made available to individuals and companies that access the Center,” said Michael Alt, Director of Business Development, Eastman Business Park. “This is a win-win for Rochester and New York State, and will help build a vibrant, world-class, advanced battery and energy storage sector.”

“NY-BEST’s plans to establish a commercialization center at Eastman Business Park is a critical step toward solidifying the Rochester, NY Region’s leadership role as a hub for energy innovation,” said Mark S. Peterson, president & CEO of Greater Rochester Enterprise. “We have the material and precision manufacturing expertise, skilled workforce and university R&D resources to help NY-BEST provide world-class testing and validation of battery energy storage solutions.”

NY-BEST also convened a first ever commercialization workshop for key industry stakeholders to identify the specific needs companies have to move battery and energy storage materials and concepts from the lab to the commercial market.

Companies using the Center will be able to produce large quantities of battery-related material, incorporate material into full-scale battery cells, produce meaningful quantities of cells, incorporate the cells into packs, modules and full systems, produce test packs, modules and full systems, and use available testing equipment to provide independent validation and an array of advanced diagnostics.