TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The University of Alabama and the Tuscaloosa County Economic Development Authority are jointly hosting a summit Friday, Oct. 28, on the emerging power and mobility economy in the region.
Mike Oatridge, executive director of Alabama Mobility and Power Center; and Dr. Bharat Balasubramanian, executive director of Center for Advanced Vehicle Technologies and chief mobility research and development officer for the Alabama Transportation Institute, will give presentations and participate in a question-and-answer session hosted by Dr. Russell J. Mumper, vice president for research and economic development. A representative with TCEDA will also give brief remarks.
The summit aims to provide stakeholders and policymakers in West Alabama with information on emerging industries and economic development around electric vehicles and required infrastructure while highlighting how major research initiatives at UA can diversify economic opportunities.
Presentations begin at 8 a.m. in 0115 Hewson Hall on the UA campus and are scheduled to last until 9:15 a.m.
“UA and key partners are leading compelling academic, research and development initiatives that provide a great opportunity to engage with local and state stakeholders to frame the new mobility and power economy. We are very excited to present this joint summit with our partners at TCEDA,” Mumper said.
Organized under ATI, AMP was established in partnership with Alabama Power Company and Mercedes-Benz U.S. International Inc. as a research and workforce development center to meet the needs of the electric vehicle market. It envisions to be a premier research and development hub for creating and sustaining modern mobility and power technologies, developing charging infrastructure and managing power delivery to support large-scale growth in electric vehicles.
AMP is gathering a critical mass of faculty and staff experts to support both private and government investment on new battery technologies and secure an efficient infrastructure to charge electric vehicles.
“TCEDA is interested in promoting UA’s mobility and power research because we see very plainly the value this research brings in terms of job creation and attracting new investment to the community,” Smyth said. “Partnering with the talented faculty, staff and students at UA to create opportunities like this is in direct alignment with our organizational mission to sustain an environment favorable to the creation and preservation of jobs.”
UA’s research in mobility and power attracts talented students and encourages them to gain skills and a network necessary for a career in electric vehicle manufacturing and its supporting infrastructure. In this way, UA plays a crucial role in developing the workforce needed for the industry.
“Just as companies will be drawn to the cutting edge research being conducted at UA, they will be attracted to the top tier students and potential employees that are graduating each year,” Smyth said.
The University of Alabama, part of The University of Alabama System, is the state’s flagship university. UA shapes a better world through its teaching, research and service. With a global reputation for excellence, UA provides an inclusive, forward-thinking environment and nearly 200 degree programs on a beautiful, student-centered campus. A leader in cutting-edge research, UA advances discovery, creative inquiry and knowledge through more than 30 research centers. As the state’s largest higher education institution, UA drives economic growth in Alabama and beyond.