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North Dakota Industrial Commission Supports New Renewable Energy Projects
Post Date: May 23 2017

By Industrial Commission of North Dakota
The North Dakota Industrial Commission has approved $1,125,000 in research and development grants for three renewable energy projects. The projects involve research and development of renewable energy technologies and processes that have strong growth potential in North Dakota.
 
The Legislature established the renewable energy grant program in 2007 to provide funding for research, development, marketing and education to foster growth of renewable energy including wind, biofuels, biomass, solar, hydroelectric, geothermal and hydrogen.
 
In a joint statement, the Industrial Commission stated, “These projects continue the state’s research efforts to identify all the available energy sources that will move North Dakota’s economy forward. In addition to the research being done in North Dakota these projects will involve companies engaged in the state’s manufacturing sector.” The North Dakota Industrial Commission, consisting of Governor Doug Burgum, as chairman, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem and Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring, oversees the Renewable Energy Program.
 
Projects include:
 
Portable Solar Array Modules
Packet Digital – Fargo
Total project costs: $1,000,000
Amount awarded: $500,000
 
The purpose of this project is to develop and commercialize transportable solar power generation modules capable of delivering up to 1 kilowatt for remote military installations, emergency shelters and camps, and a variety of commercial uses.  The project aims to eliminate the fuel requirement and noise associated with standard electromechanical power generation, as well as reducing the life cycle cost. Manufacturing will occur at Chiptronics in Dunseith. With this project, Packet Digital expects to add two to four jobs in the first year, increasing to 6-10 in the next few years. Chiptronics also expects to add four to five jobs to support the manufacturing. 
 
A Novel Approach to Reduce the Energy Consumption of Residential Homes
Terra Labs - Horace
Total project costs: $1,461,664
Amount awarded: $500,000
 
The purpose of this project is to develop a community heating and cooling system that utilizes geothermal energy and heat pumps to provide affordable and efficient energy for a residential community to be built in Horace.  The system will be owned by the city of Horace.  Cost savings will be realized through joint trenching with the water main along with shared heating and engineering design in the well field.
 
Solar Soaring Power Manager Phase III
Submitted by: Packet Digital – Fargo
Total project costs: $1,250,000
Amount awarded: $125,000
 
The overall goal of this project is to create a solar soaring power management system for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) to initially double fly times and ultimately provide unlimited endurance powered by solar energy. Packet Digital is partnering with other North Dakota entities, including c2renew and Chiptronics, to develop the molds and materials needed for the manufacturing of the UAS in North Dakota. Packet Digital previously received $375,000 for this project. The award was increased by $125,000 from $375,000 to $500,000.
 

For more information on these projects or the program, contact Karlene Fine (701-328-3722) or Andrea Holl Pfennig (701-328-5300) or visit www.nd.gov/ndic/renew-infopage.htm.  
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