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The eXtremeMAT team met Oct. 18, 2018, in Columbus, OH to review research plans and progress
Fossil energy transformational power technologies like ultra-supercritical steam plants and supercritical carbon-dioxide power have the potential to increase efficiencies and bolster clean coal efforts because they operate at higher temperatures and pressures. However, this leads to harsher and more corrosive conditions compared to traditional power plants. Furthermore, today’s current fleet of fossil power plants are increasingly being subjected to cycling conditions due to the penetration of renewable energy sources onto the electricity grid. These plants were designed for baseload operations, and the changing of plant temperature and pressures during cycling adds stress to the materials of construction, which may cause premature failure of components in service. Thus, the materials of construction are being subjected to more “extreme” operating environments. Accelerating the development of improved steels, superalloys and other advanced alloys is of paramount importance in deploying materials solutions to address materials challenges associated with both the existing fleet and future power systems.
Photos from LEAP 4
Energy experts from around the U.S., China and Europe are converging at NETL in Morgantown this week to share ideas and challenges related to innovations that will improve flexibility in hybrid power cycles as part of the Low Emission Advanced Power (LEAP 4) Workshop on Flexibility in Power Systems. Compared to traditional, base-load power generation, the changing electric market has placed a new value on technologies that are both efficient and flexible over a wide load range. The goal of the workshop is to accelerate the development and commercialization of highly flexible, low-emission, high-efficiency hybrid power systems of the future by promoting dialog among the leading international researchers in hybrid system technology and controls development. Critical research needs are being identified in sessions that seek to coordinate international efforts. In lieu of traditional presentations, attendees are sharing technical expertise through an interactive format. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will publish a final assessment of general opportunities and technical issues related to highly integrated hybrid power systems, authored by the attendees.
Seventeen elements within the periodic table are considered REEs. Rare earths are highly valuable because they are essential components of modern technological devices, such as cell phones and computer hard drives.
Acid mine drainage (AMD) – a waste byproduct that must be treated – is an inevitable trade-off for the affordable, abundant and reliable power derived from coal mining operations. But AMD now offers potential economic opportunities, thanks to emerging technology being developed in collaboration with NETL to extract rare earth elements (REEs). Seventeen elements within the periodic table are considered REEs. Rare earths are highly valuable because they are essential components of modern technological devices, such as cell phones and computer hard drives. They are also used in advanced technologies that support a broad range of industries, including health care, transportation and defense.
With expected shortfalls of 1-2 million unfilled jobs in science-, technology-, engineering- and math- (STEM-) related industries over the next decade, it will be imperative to attract and retain more people – including underrepresented populations – to join the STEM workforce.
With expected shortfalls of 1-2 million unfilled jobs in science-, technology-, engineering- and math- (STEM-) related industries over the next decade, it will be imperative to attract and retain more people – including underrepresented populations – to join the STEM workforce. These future opportunities include high-tech and highly skilled jobs in energy and advanced manufacturing in active National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) research areas, such as advanced computing, new composite materials, novel manufacturing processes and innovative research related to fossil fuels. 
Creating Pittsburgh's Energy Future Today
NETL’s work to assist the City of Pittsburgh in its “Clean Energy City of the Future” initiatives will be recognized by the Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) Mid-Atlantic Region with a state and local economic development award for 2018 during the organization’s regional meeting set for Wednesday, Nov. 14 at the Universities at Shady Grove in Rockville, Maryland. The FLC is a formally chartered organization mandated by Congress to promote, educate and facilitate technology transfer among more than 300 federal laboratories, research centers and agencies. Its Mid-Atlantic Region serves as an important link between the public and federal technology, technical expertise, and research and development assets. The FLC Mid-Atlantic Region provides gateway services, networking opportunities, conferences, publications, training, and technology locator assistance across all federal agencies.
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The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy (FE) has issued a Notice of Intent for a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) expected to fund cost-shared research and development (R&D) projects that reduce technical risks associated with enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and expand application of EOR methods. The objective of DE-FOA-0001988, Advanced Technologies for Enhanced Oil Recovery, is to competitively solicit and award R&D projects that will focus primarily on developing enhanced recovery technologies in unconventional and conventional reservoirs. Projects should also aid in the development of domestic unconventional fossil energy resources, as well as improve the understanding of reservoirs and improve low recovery factors from unconventional oil wells. FE’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) will manage the selected projects, which will focus on two areas of interest: 1) EOR technologies for onshore conventional oil reservoirs and 2) EOR technologies for unconventional reservoirs.
REE hand and Devices
NETL Researchers Paul Ohodnicki, Ph.D., and Dustin McIntyre, Ph.D., have worked with optical sensors and laser induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) for years, adapting their respective technologies to fit different applications. When the U.S. Department of Energy recently made securing a domestic supply of rare earth elements (REEs) a priority, both researchers realized that portable sensors were uniquely suited to achieve this goal.
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The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy has issued a Notice of Intent for an upcoming Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). This FOA is expected to provide funding for cost-shared research and development projects that increase recovery from unconventional oil and natural gas (UOG) plays and characterize fundamental attributes of emerging shale plays. DE-FOA-0001990, Advanced Technologies for Recovery of Unconventional Oil and Natural Gas Resources, will support key efforts within DOE’s Oil and Natural Gas Program. These efforts aim to increase the estimated ultimate recovery and recovery efficiency of oil and gas from the Nation’s unconventional resources in order to support U.S. energy dominance. The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) will manage projects selected under this FOA.
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The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is announcing up to $30 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development (R&D) under the second closing of the Office of Fossil Energy’s (FE’s) Novel and Enabling Carbon Capture Transformational Technologies funding opportunity announcement. Selected projects will support the development of solvent, sorbent, and membrane technologies to address scientific challenges and knowledge gaps associated with reducing the cost of carbon capture, supporting DOE’s goal to develop technologies that can significantly reduce the cost of CO2capture from coal fired power plants. Specifically, projects must address one area of interest, Development of Novel Transformational Materials and Processes, with the following three subtopics: Subtopic 1A: Novel Solvents for Lab-Scale R&D
NETL, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) only national laboratory devoted to fossil fuel research, will be represented at the fifth-annual WV Makes Festival
NETL, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) only national laboratory devoted to fossil fuel research, will be represented at the fifth-annual WV Makes Festival – the Mountain State’s celebration of ingenuity and creativity held in conjunction with National Manufacturing Day Friday, Oct. 5, at the Memorial Student Center of Marshall University in Huntington, W.Va. WV Makes is organized by the Robert C. Byrd Institute. Last year, nearly 3,000 events took place across the country for National Manufacturing Day, when manufacturers and educators opened their doors, offered plant tours and engaged their communities. Thousands of students, parents, and teachers learned about rewarding careers in manufacturing and experienced the high-tech innovations in 21st century manufacturing. As the Mountain State’s version of Manufacturing Day, WV Makes reaches out to students, parents, and teachers with exhibits and hands-on STEM demonstrations. Last year, more than 2,000 people attended WV Makes, including 800 students.