Bridging the Gap: the Role of DOD in Clean Energy Commercialization: DOD Installations as “Living Laboratories”
By Harold Sanborn, René Parker, and Erik Kallio
Abstract: The Department of Defense (DOD) has a unique opportunity to be a leader in bridging the gap between research and development (R&D) and commercial clean energy technologies. Faced with the inextricable linkage between energy, security, environment, and economics, the DOD is positioned to play an important role in the demonstration of new and emerging clean energy technologies, and also to become early first adopters of the technologies. Military installations are “living laboratories”; they offer a controlled and safe environment to demonstrate emerging technologies and to provide a critical feedback loop between the end-users and technology providers. This work reviewed Federal energy policy, explored the role of R&D in meeting DOD needs with regard to energy issues, defined measures of “Technology Readiness and Commercialization, outlined the role of installations as “living laboratories,” and provided several case studies of energy-related studies done at Army installations.