The ARPA-E Newsletter: October 2012

New Program Director

Dr. Ping Liu recently joined ARPA-E as a new Program Director. He was previously Manager of Energy Technology at HRL Laboratories, an industrial research company jointly owned by the Boeing Company and General Motors. At HRL, Dr. Liu led a broad range of research activities in energy conversion and storage for owner companies as well as government and commercial customers. His group specialized in online state estimation, aging diagnosis, and life prediction of lithium ion batteries. Dr. Liu also developed a variety of concepts in multifunctional power, solid-state batteries, and lithium-sulfur chemistry. In addition, Dr. Liu’s group investigated extensively in solid-state hydrogen storage, fuel cell materials, and electrochemical capacitors for automotive applications.

Prior to joining HRL in 2003, Dr. Liu was a member of the technical staff at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) where he conducted research in thin film batteries, electrochromics, and optical hydrogen sensors. He contributed to several inventions that have been transitioned to industry for commercialization and received an R&D 100 Award from R&D Magazine for a solid-state battery technology. Dr. Liu has published more than 60 archival journal papers and has more than 40 issued or pending patents. He received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D.—all in chemistry—from Fudan University in China.

ARPA-E Projects Named to Top 100 List

Global Cleantech named 5 ARPA-E awardees to its annual list of the 100 most innovative clean technology companies in the world. Envia Systems, 1366 TechnologiesSoraa, OPX Biotechnologies, and Transphorm were all featured in this year’s Global Cleantech list. To read more about the transformational energy projects these notable companies are working on and to see the full Global Cleantech list, click here.

Agrivida Announces Series C Financing, Strategic Partnership 

One of ARPA-E’s first awardees, Agrivida, recently announced $15 million in Series C financing to advance the development and commercialization of its proprietary technologies. The company also recently announced a partnership with POET LLC, one of the world’s largest ethanol producers. Agrivida develops improved crops with enzyme expression for the production of biofuels and bioproducts from non-food agricultural residues and dedicated biomass crops. For more information on Agrivida, visit

ARPA-E University Rebroadcast

Miss the latest ARPA-E University webinar on writing winning technical proposals? You can find all of the webinars in the ARPA-E University webinar series on our website. Look for information on upcoming webinars in next month's newsletter.  

Summit Student Program Deadline Approaching

The 2013 ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit features a unique opportunity for student energy leaders to engage with policymakers, entrepreneurs, industry leaders, and technologists. Admission into the Student Program includes free Summit admission, inclusion in a resume book, and structured networking activities. For more information please visit the “Register” tab of the 2013 Summit website:

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