PIET: Focus and Approach
In 2009, the Energy Efficiency Center at the University of California, Davis launched the Program for International Energy Technologies (PIET) to accelerate the development and commercialization of low-cost, clean and efficient energy technologies and solutions into the marketplace in developed and developing countries. The main objectives of this initiative are to:
- Build an on-going multi-disciplinary program that will educate and engage UC Davis students in energy-related issues in underserved communities in developing countries.
- Bridge the current gap between the need, existing technologies, and the market by creating entrepreneurial strategies for dissemination in developing countries.
- Allow student teams to create a positive impact by working with partner communities to identify and address local energy business opportunities.
- Promote energy efficiency, mitigate climate change and environmental impacts, and advance energy independence in developing countries.
- Provide technical training and support for advancement in adoption of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies worldwide.
PIET assembles motivated student teams and staff mentors from business, engineering and the physical social sciences, and encourages them to think critically using the “Four Lenses of Sustainability”.
D-Lab: Development via Dialogue, Design & Dissemination
Based on locally expressed, current needs of partner communities and the expertise available, the program’s current focus is in the following areas:
- Off-grid lighting and micro-power
- Agriculture, including pumping, irrigation and post-harvest
- Renewable energy, including solar, biogas and wind
- Domestic electricity use and energy efficiency
The University of California, Davis Energy Efficiency Center (EEC), in collaboration with the Center for Entrepreneurship (C4E), and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed a two-part series of courses to educate and involve university students in energy issues in developing countries. Curriculum includes lectures, guest speakers, case studies, and hands-on lab modules. Throughout the year, students network with international partner communities to help solve real-life problems in developing countries.