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DOE announces US$264M for basic research in support of “Energy Earthshots”

DOE announces US$264M for basic research in support of “Energy Earthshots”
Jennifer M. Granholm Secretary of the US Department of Energy (photo courtesy DOE).

The US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced US$264 million in funding for 29 projects to develop solutions for the scientific challenges underlying DOE’s Energy Earthshots Initiative to advance clean energy technologies within the decade. The funding will support 11 new Energy Earthshot Research Centers led by DOE National Laboratories and 18 university research teams addressing one or more of the "Energy Earthshots" that are focused on six different areas, including industrial decarbonization, carbon storage, and offshore wind.

The DOE launched theEnergy Earthshots Initiativeto spur decarbonization efforts that will help the United States meet President Biden’s ambitious climate and clean energy goals, including a 50 percent reduction in carbon emissions by 2030 and a net-zero carbon economy by 2050.

Our Energy Earthshots are game-changing endeavors to unleash the technologies of the clean energy transition and make them accessible, affordable, and abundant. The Energy Earthshot Research Centers and the related work happening on college campuses around the country will be instrumental in developing the clean energy and decarbonization solutions we need to establish a 100 percent clean grid and beat climate change, said US Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm.

The “Energy Earthshots” connect DOE’s basic science and energy technology offices to accelerate innovations toward more abundant, affordable, and reliable clean energy solutions.

These efforts seek to revolutionize many sectors across the United States and will rely on fundamental science and innovative technology to be successful.

The 29 projects were selected by competitive peer review under two DOE solicitations: the National Laboratory Program Announcement for Energy Earthshot Research Centers and the Funding Opportunity Announcement for Science Foundations for Energy Earthshots.

Both solicitations covered the first six Energy Earthshots: Carbon Negative Shot, Enhanced Geothermal Shot, Floating Offshore Wind Shot, Hydrogen Shot, Industrial Heat Shot, and Long Duration Storage Shot. Since then, DOE announced a seventh: the Clean Fuels & Products Shot.

Science Foundations for Energy Earthshots

DOE’s Office of Science awarded a combined US$69.1 million to researchers at 18 different universities across 14 states that will, for example, investigate hydrogen arc plasmas to make steelmaking carbon-free and how to make clean energy systems more resilient using exascale computer simulations and observations.

  • Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona
  • California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California
  • Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Georgia State University, Atlanta, Georgia
  • New York University, New York, New York
  • The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
  • University of California, Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, California
  • University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida
  • University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • University of Illinois Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
  • University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, Illinois
  • University of Minnesota Twin Cities, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • University of Nevada, Reno, Reno, Nevada
  • University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • The University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, Texas
  • Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri
  • Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut

Energy Earthshot Research Centers

The Energy Earthshot Research Centers will support multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary teams addressing key basic research challenges relevant to the Energy Earthshots.

The centers will be housed at eight DOE National Laboratories and will receive a combined US$195 million across four years.

Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont, Illinois

  • C-STEEL: Center for Steel Electrification by Electrosynthesis

Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, New York

  • C4M: Center for Coupled Chemo-Mechanics of Cementitious Composites for EGS

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California

  • CIWE: Center for Ionomer-based Water Electrolysis
  • RESTOR-C: RESTORation of Soil Carbon by Precision Biological Strategies

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, California

  • Terraforming Soil EERC: Accelerating Soil-Based Carbon Drawdown Through Advanced Genomics and Geochemistry

National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, Colorado

  • DEGREES: Degradation Reactions in Electrothermal Energy Storage
  • FLOWMAS:浮动海上风力国防部eling and Simulation

Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee

  • NEETER: Non-Equilibrium Energy Transfer for Efficient Reactions

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington

  • ACE-FWICC: Addressing Challenges in Energy: Floating Wind in a Changing Climate
  • CUSSP: Center for Understanding Subsurface Signals and Permeability

Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton, New Jersey

PEHPr: Center for the Science of Plasma-Enhanced Hydrogen Production

Total funding is US$264 million for projects lasting up to 4 years in duration, with US$100 million in Fiscal Year 2023 dollars and outyear funding contingent on congressional appropriations.

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