This paper focuses on innovative renewable energy devices, exploring how scientifically-based industry standards that continuously evolve with engineering design technology, the public’s buy-in and feeling of connectedness with groundbreaking devices, and innovation clusters that accelerate device development through data sharing and public-private partnerships can all help advance the U.S.’s domestic renewable energy industry.

Part I analyzes challenges inherent to scaling- up novel renewable energy technologies while simultaneously developing the industry standards regulating them. Part II uses the Block Island Wind Farm, an offshore wind demonstration project, and Pavegen’s globally-deployed arrays of piezoelectric smart flooring tiles as examples illustrating the importance connectedness and engagement play in garnering public buy-in during a cutting-edge renewable energy device’s roll-out. Part III discusses private investors’ critical role in bearing financial risks associated with backing experimental technologies, promoting aesthetically unusual device designs, and integrating novel devices into the built environment.

Part IV explores the advantages that data anonymization and data sharing within a data trust construct can produce for constituents in an innovation

cluster, particularly those functioning together within a public-private partnership. Part V explores the benefits of introducing a renewable energy device prototype in an innovation cluster, where the government, academia, and industry collaborate and share data through public-private partnerships in an engaged, supportive, and technologically savvy community focused on accelerating the development of a particular industry.

This paper concludes that by setting industry standards that continuously evolve in tandem with technologies they aim to regulate, having businesses’ investment-backed expectations remain a key driving force in renewable energy device development, and deploying government funding through innovation clusters that support data sharing and public-private partnerships in a particular industry, the U.S. can strike a desired balance and mindfully scale-up its nascent renewable energy industry.