Our approach and solutions drive exponential societal impact
The CDE’s holistic approach in finding exponential solutions for distributed energy has profound
multi-dimensional impact on all people and their life. On the surface, it may sound similar from
side lines, but our approach is unique and different in the very way highly effective and
pragmatic solutions are arrived that can be implemented in real world scenarios of today.
Currently, there are about 1.2 billion people on this planet without access to lighting and other
basic electrical energy. If one could develop affordable solutions for these basic needs, then
their potential use for making existing advanced systems too can be game changing for all.
Most impactful innovations are essentially universal-in- nature and multi-directional in flow.
From within the university environment of Georgia Tech, we provide a real operational bridge to
harness massive societal benefits of innovative technologies and people potential.
- On one hand, our work continuously advances frontiers of underlying technology
enablers, while on the other; we actively create new disruptive and transformative
Startups, new jobs, new skill-sets, new products, new operating business models, and
supplement a new generation of future energy professionals.
- At the same time, innovation at CDE comes in both forms that are convergent to derive
maximum impact: disruptive and transformative ventures as well as incremental steps to
reach a confluence from “where we are today” to “where e want to tomorrow”.
- Our teams are very tightly integrated with current needs of existing industry as well. And,
this enhances reliability and productivity of energy industry by improving their array of
products and systems.
Our output significantly transforms quality of human life, especially where there is no energy or
grid availability. In many other parts of the world, our solutions positively impact growth of
suboptimal and struggling systems, and of course, they also enable transition of existing
advanced industry into a cleaner and more sustainable environment.
Our goal is not only to develop innovative and affordable solutions but also demonstrate their
pragmatic and successful commercial implementation for societal prosperity.
We enable and virtually drive this process to its end goal of successful commercialization.
Towards this end, as a natural corollary to every solution, CDE develops an actionable business
plan in the form of a report that is thoroughly market vetted, and has a detailed commercial
roadmap for taking these transformative technologies to markets and people.
We call it “OPPORTUNITY ASSESSMENT REPORT” (OAR).
This report is a by-product of our very iterative technology and product development process
that intimately embraces rigorous storyboarding, customer discovery and MVP build process.
We de-risk the ideas upfront to enhance its chance of commercialization in the most appropriate
way within the CDE environment. It also accelerates the commercialization process.
One of the key differentiating factors in CDE environment is that it has the depth of deep domain
knowledge on one hand, and unlike most other centers anywhere in the world, combines hands-
on entrepreneurial experience integrally embedded in our team – 24/7.
Our OAR outlines adaptation path for the new technologies into different scenarios – from ‘no-
grid’ to ‘poor-grid’ to ‘advanced-grids’.
This roadmap is made available to CDE’s industry members, entrepreneurs, and other
stakeholders for commercialization.
A compliant and efficient IPP (Industry-Partnership Program) process is managed by GTRC
(Georgia Tech Research Corporation) per compliant process to take it forward.
We address major technology gaps...
Among many other projects to overcome technology barriers as mentioned in Research
Initiatives and IPP sections, CDE teams are particularly addressing major issues in technologies
relating to communications, security and system integration of the grid and upcoming renewable
energy assets along with their integration with Internet of Everything and mobility.
These integrated solutions and technologies are key to lead us into new digital industrial
revolution we already are experiencing, and help us make appropriate choices into the way we
may live our life in a connected and shared society going forward.
'Zero-Cost-of-Communications': Changing the paradigm in distributed energy solutions
Specifically, our ability to provide distributed energy to consumers in rural and other
economically-challenged areas where there is no or poor grid, need solutions that are very low-
cost, are location-independent and virtually universal in adoption.
Our teams are working on virtually ‘zero-cost- of-communication’ solutions that synergistically
leverage availability, accessibility and affordability with energy devices and consumers or
prosumers (producers as well as consumers) as the case may be.
'New frontiers in Cyber Security' drive innovation in product design and architecture
Managing complexity and reliability of trusted communications, control and operation of the
distributed energy system is vital to their future success.
As energy devices, consumers, prosumers increasingly become more and more distributed, and
start using of energy in myriad different ways, do payments in multiple 24/7, and transact many
other related front-end and back-end business as well as operational processes; CDE
interdisciplinary teams are working on system-level and component-level cybersecurity and
physical security solutions.
'Innovative System Integration' enable accelerated acceptance into the field...
CDE team always starts with the end goal of the final solution in mind: What is out there? Why
is it not working? How can we scale the solution? What would the final product cost? What is
affordable by the end-customer? How can the solution be robust in the field use or abuse? And,
so on. This kind of scenario analysis and storyboarding highlights any fatal flaws in our
approach to arrive at an acceptable final solutions.
Thereafter, with the likely bounds in mind – a design envelope established upfront – the team
goes about developing and integrating various technologies and components into a
comprehensive solution or sub-solution of the need. In parallel, a beachhead is made through
our established industry partners to run sanity checks on our thinking. This allows us to tailor
our design to suitable market and industry trends.
An example of this can be seen in several of our Research Initiative projects
Educating and training the next generation of energy professionals...
The CDE faculty and staff make every effort to disseminate and merge the new findings into Georgia Tech educational curriculum as well as to industry professional through a number of activities. Some of these are being planned, and others are already in progress.
- Over 15 PhD students
- Several teaching modules in Graduate and Undergraduate Degree programs
- Weekly Brown-bag Seminars
- Quarterly Industry Workshops
- Yearly ‘Thought-leadership’ Conferences
The Center is an inclusive and open framework for any stakeholder – local, regional or global – to
collaborate with our R&D team, staff and initiatives. For more details – please register and connect with the most appropriate person on our team.