The US Department of Energy (DOE) launched $30 million in funding to ensure storage cybersecurity is integrated into the development of storage and clean energy solutions.
It said the cash is designed to support the research, development, and demonstration of “next-generation tools” to protect clean energy delivery infrastructure from cyber attacks. It set out 10 areas that will receive funding.
Inverter-based resources (IBR) is one of the 10 areas. It includes wind and solar generation technology, as well as related energy storage and battery assets. “While IBRs play an important role in delivering clean energy to consumers, they have also become a new vector for cyber attacks,” the DOE said. This funding will focus on applications and technologies to identify and mitigate cyber vulnerabilities, it added.
Funding will also target communications security of Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) and Distributed Energy Resource Aggregations.
The International Energy Agency says DERs can generate or store energy, or manage its consumption depending on type. The term covers a wide range of technologies that are located close to customers, such as energy efficiency and demand response solutions, solar photovoltaic assemblies and batteries. DERs are sometimes more narrowly defined as ‘behind-the-meter’ resources.
Another area for funding is strengthening the cybersecurity of virtual power plants (VPPs). It said cybersecurity R&D is necessary to reduce the cyber risk to VPPs and to enable their secure operation and management.