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NODES Highlights

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Severe weather, cyber intrusions, and physical attacks can damage America’s critical energy infrastructure and cause power outages that affect families and businesses alike. As Secretary Perry observes, “A reliable and resilient electric grid is critical not only to our national and economic security, but also to the everyday lives of American families.” Increasing use of distributed generation and battery storage technologies creates new operating requirements for the grid. This transformation is driving ARPA‑E to support promising early-stage energy technologies that could make the U.S. electric grid more reliable, flexible, and resilient. To reinforce that effort, ARPA-E created the Grid Optimization (GO) Competition. This multi-round series of prize challenges seeks to accelerate the development and evaluation of grid software solutions. In anticipation of GO Challenge #1’s launch this fall, we’ve taken a look at several ARPA-E programs already working to transform the American electric grid for the 21st century.
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Building a More Resilient Grid in Puerto Rico When Hurricane Maria struck the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico last September, it took the entire island’s power grid with it.Today, over 95 percent of the island has its power restored, but the rebuilding process is far from finished. Over the long term, many challenges remain — along with some big opportunities to make the grid smarter and more resilient. 
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Learn more about Dr. Sonja Glavaski's background, how she came to ARPA-E, the Network Optimized Distributed Energy Systems (NODES) Program, and what it means to be a woman in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
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The aging U.S. electric grid is comprised of more than 300,000 miles of electric transmission lines that take electricity from power plants to transformers and finally, into homes and businesses. More than 30% of the electric grid's transmission lines, transformers and other hardware are approaching or past the end of their life cycle. About 10% of electricity produced in U.S. power plants never reaches potential users because it’s lost during transmission, and power outages and blackouts. This loss of energy costs businesses and consumers nearly $80 billion dollars a year.
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WASHINGTON— The Energy Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) today announced $33 million in funding for 12 innovative projects as part of ARPA-E’s newest program Network Optimized Distributed Energy Systems (NODES). NODES project teams will develop technologies that coordinate load and generation on the grid to create a virtual energy storage system. 
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