MONTRÉAL, Dec. 11, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - Hydro-Québec and the Aquitaine Regional Council are pleased to announce the creation of SCE France, whose activities will focus on research and technology transfer in transportation electrification and energy storage and conservation.
SCE France, a subsidiary of Hydro-Québec, will set up a laboratory dedicated to research and technology transfer in the Aquitaine region to develop lithium-iron-phosphate-based batteries and carry out research on new battery technologies that use advanced materials.
"Materials developed through our research lead to the development of innovative, high-performance, safe batteries. We are proud that the Aquitaine Regional Council recognizes the quality of the products and technologies developed at Hydro-Québec's research institute (IREQ). SCE France will be an important driver for economic collaboration and will generate significant spinoffs for Québec," said Karim Zaghib, Director – Energy Storage and Conservation at IREQ and Director of SCE France.
"With this creation, the Aquitaine Regional Council reinforces its commitment to meet the challenge of energy storage and strengthens its support for scientific, technological and industrial development, with the goal of becoming a leading region on the international stage for the manufacturing of high-performance batteries, showing that Europe has a role to play with respect to this major challenge," added Alain Rousset, President of the Aquitaine Regional Council.
Forecasts for energy storage and conservation show strong growth. The main areas of application include integrating renewable energy (wind, hydrokinetic, solar, hydro), fast-charging networks for electric vehicles, both hybrid and all-electric, and emergency power supply systems.
In July 2014, Hydro-Québec and the Regional Council of Aquitaine signed an agreement signalling their interest in collaborating in the field of advanced battery materials for transportation electrification.
About Hydro-Québec's research institute
Hydro-Québec's research institute, IREQ, is a global leader in the development of advanced materials for battery manufacturing and creates leading edge processes from its state of the art facilities. IREQ holds more than 800 patent rights and 40 licenses for battery materials used by some of the world's most successful battery manufacturers and materials suppliers. Its areas of expertise include energy storage and it works with private sector companies in Québec to build charging stations for all-electric and hybrid vehicles, as part of its research program. Its material development contributions are helping to develop safe, high-performance lithium ion batteries that can be charged more quickly and a greater number of times. IREQ promotes open innovation and partners with private firms, universities, government agencies and research centers in Québec and abroad. Its partnerships allow IREQ to develop, industrialize and market technologies resulting from those innovation projects.
Hydro-Québec generates, transmits and distributes electricity. It is Canada's largest electricity producer and is among the world's largest hydropower producers. Its sole shareholder is the Québec government. It uses almost exclusively renewable generating options, in particular hydropower, and supports the development of other sources of energy, such as wind and biomass, through purchases from independent power producers. Its research institute, IREQ, conducts R&D in energy efficiency, energy storage and other energy-related fields. Hydro-Québec invests $100 million in research every year. www.hydroquebec.com
About the Aquitaine Regional Council
For over 15 years, the Aquitaine Regional Council has focussed on excellence and innovation, to which it allocates nearly 12% of its annual budget.
By fostering collaboration between researchers and manufacturers, supporting R&D programs and encouraging technological transfer, the region has provided each sector with a strong scientific base and the understanding of key technologies that allow them to reinforce and contribute to the competitiveness of Aquitaine's industrial fabric.
Based on Pasteur's quadrant, this strategy focuses on supporting fundamental scientific research underlying Aquitaine's major societal issues: health, an aging population, global warming, etc.
For financial stakeholders, this research targets new skills in order to open up new markets with strong potential and little competition that will generate sustainable growth. This vitality can be seen in the 75% increase in the region's patent production over the past decade.
Aquitaine's model has also had a positive impact on employment, despite particularly difficult economic conditions. Aquitaine remains a leader in company creation. www.aquitaine.fr