ETS@researchtriangle panels Nov. 12 focus on critical issues for energy industry

Research Triangle Region, N.C. – Panel discussions featuring regional and national smart energy experts will focus on issues critical to shaping the nation’s energy future at the inaugural Energy Thought Summit (ETS@researchtriangle) Nov. 12 in Fletcher Opera Theater at the Duke Energy Performing Arts Center in Raleigh, N.C.

Five summit panels will focus on key components required to develop and deploy the smart grid, serve customers and support innovation. A sixth panel, Research Triangle Energy Ecosystem, will showcase the assets, innovations and opportunities that are propelling the region to global prominence in this growing sector. The summit is being coordinated by the Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster (RTCC) with Zpryme.

“The building blocks of the Research Triangle Region’s smart energy cluster, which were put in place decades ago, are now converging to propel technological innovation in this region and around the world,” said RTCC Chairman Ed White, chairman and CEO of Field2Base Inc. “I’m eager to discuss with some of our energy pioneers the opportunities and requirements for building North Carolina’s clean energy economy.”

White’s panel will feature experts from a range of companies involved in developing and deploying smart energy technologies – PlotWatt, Red Hat, ScottMadden and Wake Electric Membership Corp. – along with Dr. Iqbal Husain, director of the National Science Foundation-funded Future Renewable Electric Energy Delivery and Management (FREEDM) Systems Center at N.C. State University, and Dr. Richard Newell, director of the Duke University's Energy Initiative and Gendell Professor of Energy and Environmental Economics.

The summit’s five issue-focused panels are:

- Grid of the Future – Renewables, electric vehicles, energy storage and other technological advances will create the smart grid of the future. Former N.C. Public Utilities Commission chair Jo Anne Sanford leads a discussion with some of the biggest names in energy technology, including top executives from RTCC member companies ABB, Duke Energy, ElectriCities, PowerSecure, Schneider Electric and Siemens.

- Consumer Engagement – Consumers are increasingly using and demanding smart energy technologies. Kris Bowring of N.C.-based Lowe’s Iris™ Smart Home unit, will join panelists from Cisco, Cree, EPRI and McKim & Creed to discuss how smart energy will reach and impact consumers.

- Education and Energy – Higher education’s impact on energy innovation will be discussed by SAS CEO Jim Goodnight, faculty leaders from N.C. State University and University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and Hilda Pinnix-Ragland from Duke Energy, chair of the N.C. State Board of Community Colleges, in a panel moderated by Research Triangle Regional Partnership President and CEO Charles A. Hayes.

- Big Data & Analytics – Smart grid deployments offer utility companies vast potential to harness information that improves grid performance and customer service. OSIsoft founder and CEO Dr. Pat Kennedy will share the stage with experts from Power Analytics, SAS, Sensus and Strategic Power Systems to discuss optimizing energy delivery through real-time data solutions.

- New Energy Ventures – Disruptive technologies coupled with public-private partnerships and financing are driving many grid innovations. Panelists from ARPA-E, Causam Energy, GridBridge, GridEdge Networks, Piedmont Natural Gas and Strata Solar will share insights from the forefront of these emerging opportunities.

Tickets for the summit are $555 for in-state and $655 for out-of-state attendees. Discounted tickets at $155 are available for government, academic, NGO and utility sector attendees.

Doors open at 7:15 a.m. The program begins at 8 a.m. and ends with music and networking 6-8 p.m. The latest electric car models offered by BMW and Tesla Motors will be showcased at the summit along with an electric car built by students at Topsail and West Wilkes high schools for the EV Challenge.

For more details and to register, visithttp://energythoughtsummit.com/events/ets-at-researchtriangle-2014.

About Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster

The Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster (RTCC) is an initiative of business, government, academic and nonprofit leaders working to accelerate the region’s cleantech economy through collaboration and partnerships that promote innovation and sector growth. The Research Triangle Regional Partnership (RTRP) formed and manages the RTCC with funding from industry board members ABB Inc., Cisco Systems, Duke Energy, Field2Base Inc., Itron Inc., Piedmont Natural Gas, Power Analytics Corp., PowerSecure International, RTI International, SAS, Schneider Electric, Sensus and Siemens and its members. RTRP leads economic development for the Research Triangle Region of North Carolina.

About Zpryme

Founded in 2005 and based in Austin, Texas, Zpryme is a research-based firm with services focused on three areas: energy, transportation and mobile. Based on the creative direction of our associates, we produce influential research that challenges the status quo and marketing solutions to generate fully immersive brand experiences, from the web to face-to-face environments. Learn more atzpryme.com.

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