Google opens Clarksville-Montgomery County data center

Google recently opened its new, $600 million data center in Montgomery County. The data center’s power usage is matched with 100 percent renewable energy as part of a deal with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). 

The Clarksville data center will employee a range of professionals, including engineers, maintenance, computer technicians, and more. Governor Bill Lee, Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Bob Rolfe, Montgomery County Mayor Jim Durett, Clarksville Mayor Joe Pitts, TVA CEO Jeffrey Lyash, Austin Peay State, and University President Dr. Alisa White joined Google executives for the opening ceremony on November 6.

“We welcome Google to Clarksville and are thrilled with the growing technology sector right here in Tennessee,” said Governor Bill Lee. “Our highly skilled workforce and Google’s reputation for innovation will be transformational for this area and beyond.”

Since initially announcing its investment in the area, Google has given more than $450,000 to local nonprofits and schools. The company has also worked with Austin Peay State University on the Southeastern Grasslands Initiative.

“While this project is a part of a larger nationwide network of data centers, Google has worked hard to make a strong local impact. We are grateful to Clarksville and Montgomery County for welcoming us into this great community, and that is why we have made a concentrated effort to give back,” said Enoch Moeller, Google Data Center Site Lead. “We are thankful for the strong partners we have met throughout the process including, the State of Tennessee, both local governments, the Montgomery County school system, the Tennessee Valley Authority, Austin Peay State University, and many more.”

Google executives said from the outset of the deal being finalized that Clarksville-Montgomery County offered many of the most desired attributes on the company’s site-selection checklist. Those include a trained and tech-savvy workforce, as well as the right energy infrastructure and pad-ready, developable land.

(Some information used from The Leaf Chronicle)

Seven new research fellows joining ORNL’s Innovation Crossroads program cohort three

(Originally published on Innovation Crossroads)

Oak Ridge National Laboratory welcomed seven technology innovators to join the third cohort of Innovation Crossroads, the Southeast’s only entrepreneurial research and development program based at a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory.

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) joined Innovation Crossroads as a program sponsor enabling a record number of innovators focused on energy-related and grid topics. Innovation Crossroads is also sponsored by DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO).

Selected through a merit-based process, these scientists and engineers will have the opportunity to advance their technologies by working with world-class science experts and unique capabilities at ORNL, such as Summit, the nation’s most powerful supercomputer; the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility, DOE’s largest advanced manufacturing research center; and the Spallation Neutron Source, offering atomic-level insight into advanced materials. The innovators also will be partnered with a powerful network of mentoring organizations in the Southeast to help them develop business strategies to advance their breakthroughs to market.

The third cohort of Innovation Crossroads fellows and their projects include (video):

  • Jesse Thornburg: Learning-Based Monitoring and Control for Optimizing Commercial Refrigeration Operations
  • Alex Lewis: Microbial Electrolysis for Production of Renewable Hydrogen from Organic Waste
  • Leila Safavi-Tehrani: Advanced Production of High Purity Radioisotopes for Nuclear Medicine
  • Hicham Ghossein: Innovative Processing of Advanced Fiber Nonwoven Mats Through a Hydroentanglement System
  • Trevor McQueen: Next-Generation Sample Preparation Device for Cryo-TEM Studies
  • William Fitzhugh: Industrial Scale Production of Semiconducting Carbon-Nanotubes via Resonant-Dielectrophoresis
  • Jesse Claypoole: Advanced Multi-Spectral Light Field Imaging Sensors

Read more here.

Deadline to submit comments for TVA 2019 IRP Draft

TVA is planning its power-generation system for the next 20 years, and your thoughts will help shape the final plan. Your input will impact the electricity you use in the future and the quality of life in the Valley.

TVA released its draft 2019 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) and draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on Feb. 15. The 2019 IRP is a comprehensive study that provides direction on how TVA can best deliver clean, reliable and affordable energy in the Valley over the next 20 years. As part of the study, TVA is preparing a programmatic EIS to assess the natural, cultural and socioeconomic impacts associated with the IRP.

TVA invites you to provide comments about the plan. TVA will offer numerous ways for you to learn more and to provide input. Check out the interactive report at this website. You can submit those public comments here until April 8.

After public input is incorporated, the final IRP and EIS will be available to the public and then presented to the TVA Board of Directors for approval. Once approved, a Record of Decision will be published.

The IRP and EIS will help shape TVA’s power system over the next 20 years. You have the power to make a difference in the future of your electricity and life in the Valley.

TVA Board of Directors nominee confirmed by Senate, other nomination announced

(Credit: TimesFreePress.com)

(Credit: NewsChannel9)

The US Senate has confirmed Memphis attorney John Ryder as the newest member of the TVA board.

Nearly 13 months after he was first nominated by President Trump, Ryder will assume the seat vacated nearly two years ago by Mike McWherter.

Ryder’s term runs through 2021 on the 9-member TVA board, which currently has only seven members.

Ryder’s first public meeting with the full TVA board will be on May 9 when the TVA governing board meets in Franklin, Tennessee.

President Trump has also nominated Chattanooga native William B. Kilbride to a member of TVA’s board.

Kilbride formerly served as the president and CEO of the Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce and as president and chief sustainability officer of Mohawk Industries.

Kilbride’s nomination still has to be accepted by the US Senate before he could serve on TVA’s board. His term would run until May 18, 2023 replacing Eric Martin Satz.

Final stages near for top Innovation Crossroads cohort three applicants

Final interviews will soon be underway for the Innovation Crossroads cohort three top contenders to determine if they’ll be joining the elite program.

Innovation Crossroads is a new program based at Oak Ridge National Laboratory that matches aspiring energy entrepreneurs with the experts, mentors, and networks in technology-related fields to take their world-changing ideas from R&D to the marketplace.

Just last August, the Department of Energy and the Tennessee Valley Authority announced their partnership to support the third cohort of these energy entrepreneurs. For the first time, TVA will provide funding to support Innovation Crossroads fellows focusing on energy-related topics such as grid reliability and emerging technologies.

Currently, there are eight startups enrolled in the program whose founders come from some of the most prestigious universities in the nation.

In this latest cohort, up to six innovators will be selected to receive the two-year post-doctoral entrepreneurial fellowship at ORNL worth nearly $500,000 that includes stipends, vouchers for collaborative research and development at ORNL, startup business guidance and mentoring, and health and travel benefits.

During the selection process, Innovation Crossroads team leaders received a record number of 60 applications, representing 28 states and 39 universities.

The final interviews will be conducted February 27 and February 28, with on-boarding scheduled to take place in May of this year.

Several Innovation Crossroads entrepreneurs are enrolled in the Energy Mentor Network, formed by TAEBC and Launch Tennessee, to provide non-exclusive business mentoring services to the innovators.