House bill takes aim at electric vehicle R&D

October 6, 2022

Land Line Staff


Two House Democrats introduced the Shifting Forward Vehicle Technologies Research and Development Act, which aims to increase research and development for vehicle technologies, including electric vehicles.

Subcommittee Research and Technology Chair Rep. Haley Stevens, D-Mich., and Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., announced the introduction of the bill.

According to a news release, the legislation makes significant investments in transformational mobility technologies R&D to reduce the climate footprint of both on and off-road transportation and ensure America competes in the global transition to electric vehicles while increasing domestic production and decreasing the cost of vehicles, advanced batteries, and hydrogen fuel cell manufacturing.

“The future of America’s auto industry and Michigan’s economy depends on our nation’s ability to compete in the global transition to clean transportation,”  Stevens said in a statement. “The Shifting Forward Vehicle Technologies Research and Development Act helps our nation rise to this occasion by investing in new mobility technology R&D to address challenges across the vehicle supply chain, train our future workforce, and charter groundbreaking discoveries here in America. I am thrilled to introduce this legislation that positions Michigan at the center of unlocking solutions that ultimately lead us all to a safer, more affordable, and cleaner mobility future.”

The Shifting Forward Vehicle Technologies Research and Development Act reauthorizes the advanced vehicle technologies program for R&D at the Department of Energy for vehicle fueling, energy storage, and workforce development.

The bill focuses on comprehensive R&D challenges across the mobility supply chain, including a nonroad transportation program focused on overcoming barriers to transformational technologies for aviation, rail, and maritime applications.

In addition, the bill creates an Energy Department grant program to establish the Graduate Automotive Technology Education Centers of Excellence to provide future generations of engineers and scientists with the resources needed to thrive.

Provisions included in the bill:

  • Analyzing the energy implications and opportunities of advanced mobility solutions, communication, and connectivity among vehicles, infrastructure, pedestrians, and the electrical grid.
  • Improving vehicle batteries for extremely fast charging and wireless charging capabilities, and efficiencies to lower costs.
  • Exploring efficient use, substitution, and recycling of critical materials in vehicles, such as rare earth elements or precious metals that are at risk of supply chain disruption.
  • Testing advanced battery safety protection systems for high-voltage power and heat.
  • Enabling technologies for flexible manufacturing facilities that can accommodate different vehicle battery chemistries.
  • Increasing the production rate and decreasing the cost of advanced battery and hydrogen fuel cell manufacturing and hydrogen fueling infrastructure.
  • Advancing biofuel technologies.
  • Boosting higher efficiency manufacturing processes, such as additive manufacturing, to produce sustainable lightweight materials for fabrication, assembly and use.
  • Leveraging machine learning for manufacturing and additive manufacturing optimization.
  • Advancing computing systems, including energy-efficient systems, and connectivity for vehicular on-board, off-board, and edge computing applications.
  • Informing and educating the public on the energy outcomes of automation and connected vehicle technologies, connected infrastructure, and mobility-applied sensors to build trust.

The Shifting Forward Vehicle Technologies Research and Development Act is endorsed by the American Automotive Policy Council, Third Way, American Trucking Associations, NC Clean Energy Technology Center and the Alliance for Automotive Innovation. LL