Ulster University (UU) has given details of how it will use some of the £20m it was awarded from an EU cross-border scheme.
Around £6m will be used for a project which aims to improve the storage of renewable energy.
Recruitment of 17 new PhD researchers as part of the project is planned, funded by the EU's Interreg programme.
It will also involve collaboration between the university, three research institutes and 14 businesses.
It will look at the best ways of storing electricity and heat from individual houses, up to factories and other big industrial users.
Project leader Professor Neil Hewitt Technologies said: "If consumers can store energy effectively, that will allow very high levels of renewables to be integrated into power grids at the same time as putting consumers at the heart of the energy system.
The Interreg programme supports projects in Northern Ireland, some border counties in the Republic of Ireland and western Scotland.
It has a total value of £240m, which is due to be distributed by 2020.