The US is investing more than $34 million (£22.1m) to improve the cybersecurity of the country’s electric grid and oil and gas infrastructures.
The universities of Arkansas and Illinois will use the fund from the Department of Energy (DOE) to develop technologies that will help protect energy delivery systems.
The systems control the physical processes that result in the delivery of continuous and reliable power.
The universities will work with utilities and suppliers of energy delivery systems and components from early research to the eventual transition for use by the energy sector.
Patricia Hoffman, Assistant Secretary for DOE’s Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability said: “Cybersecurity is one of the most serious challenges facing grid modernisation, which is why maintaining a robust, ever-growing pipeline of cutting-edge technologies is essential to helping the energy sector continue adapting to the evolving landscape.
“To meet this challenge, we must continue investing in innovative, next-generation technologies that can be transitioned to the energy sector to reduce the risk of a power disruption resulting from a cyber incident.”