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Detroit’s Inventev receives $1 million Federal Transit Administration Award, Developing Transit Bus Exportable Power Standards

By Posted on August 23, 2022
News

(Detroit, MI)– The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has announced that as part of its Bus Exportable Power System (BEPS) Program it has awarded the Detroit-based Inventev team approximately $1 million to take the next step through a standards development project.  According to the FTA project website, “BEPS will enable transit agencies, communities and states to access power options through hybrid, electric or fuel-cell buses during major power disruptions.” The cooperative development project was allocated funds by the U.S. Congress in FY2021 legislation to commence a competitive selection process.

Grid resiliency and relief efforts requiring temporary power following natural disasters have been part of emergency management plans for years. However, the expanding electrification of transit buses and commercial vehicles and their related technologies now create more options to generate and transfer power between vehicles and building infrastructure in contrast to traditional diesel-powered portable generator sets. Inventev’s efforts in this arena were previously recognized by a Department of Energy/Advanced Research Projects Administration-Energy (ARPA-E) exploratory grant award in 2015 and the issuance of two U.S. Patents underlying their Zero Emission Vehicle + Emergency (ZEV+E™) work truck transmission technology. Inventev is embarking on a seed-stage funding round to commercialize the concept.

“I’m obviously very excited to learn of our team’s selection by the FTA,” said Inventev Founder and CEO, Dave Stenson.  “It will be a large effort through 2023 and into 2024 in a technical area that Inventev has been exploring for several years. Whether from buses or work trucks, the concept of grid-quality emergency backup power is becoming a market reality and part of the U.S. grid resiliency and emergency management strategy.”

With its critical leadership role in emergency management, the State of Michigan has a direct interest in the technical outcome. But the project is also consistent with a Michigan strategic priority for economic development in vehicle electrification. “Our state’s commitment to building the electric ecosystem of the future is about more than electric vehicle adoption. Finding new solutions to deliver sustainable, clean energy solutions for the purposes of life-saving emergency relief is just one possibility enabled through investments in our electric infrastructure,” said Charlie Tyson, Technology Activation Manager at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). “The potential of this project demonstrates the value of partnering with both private companies such as Inventev and other public institutions to reimagine the ways in which we utilize our transit and energy resources.”

The FTA’s funding is centered on transit bus capabilities and connection standards but flexible power conversion and interchange have also attracted the U.S. Departments of Energy and Defense in the recent past as experienced by Detroit non-profit NextEnergy.  “We are pleased to leverage our experience and expertise in exportable power to partner with Inventev and the other team members. We look forward to co-developing these standards which will enable our communities to access critical clean power options and serve them during times of emergencies,” said Jim Saber, NextEnergy President and CEO.

One such community is Inventev’s home city of Detroit. “The potential to utilize our transportation assets to provide exportable power during emergency situations could be huge. Imagine being able to seamlessly provide backup power to all your local community centers in the event of a significant power outage. And that is just the tip of this iceberg,” said Tim Slusser, the City’s Chief of Mobility Innovation. “Developing these standards will remove a vital barrier to achieving these outcomes.”

Roles have been planned for other project partners. Kimley-Horn of Michigan, Inc. (Livonia, MI) will identify and engage key transit industry and emergency management stakeholders. SAE International (Troy, MI) will conduct their disciplined and inclusive technical standards development process using appropriate stakeholder engagement. Proterra (Burlingame, CA) will advise on the transit industry, electrified vehicle architecture and software integration. The Engineering Shop (San Diego, CA) will design and fabricate bespoke power conversion device(s) compatible with the evolving standard to support hardware demonstrations.  Specifics of demonstrations (location, scope) will be developed as part of the project.

About Inventev

Inventev is a seed-stage electric vehicle technology company developing next generation electrified work truck technology to enable electrified propulsion, electrified job-site functions and emergency generation for 24/7 extended duty and grid-quality power export. With two issued U.S. Patents, Inventev intends to commercialize and market its unique transmission architecture named ZEV+E™ (or Zero Emission Vehicle + Emergency) by upfitting existing OEM medium truck platforms.

Founded in 2011, Inventev is headquartered in the City of Detroit and is a past grant award recipient from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Administration – Energy (ARPA-E) unit.

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For more information about this press release, contact:

Dave Stenson

+1.248.535.0477 (m)

dstenson@inventev.com

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