Policy

DOE lights up Biofuels with $800 million in new funding

By / May 5, 2009

DOE Secretary Steven Chu is keeping the jobs/energy ball rolling with an announcement today that the agency has allocated $786.5 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to accelerate advanced biofuels R&D and commercial-scale biorefinery demonstration projects. There are many materials research and engineering angles to this, but the $110 million for “fundamental research”…

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EFRCs to provide big down payment for materials research

By / May 2, 2009

First, I apologize for the length of this post (I’ve saved it for the weekend), but one of biggest “sleeper” stories in science in a long time is the DOE’s announcement concerning the establishment of 46 Energy Frontier Research Centers. These EFRCs have just been commissioned to focus work on a list of “grand challenges”…

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$93 million to wind energy; $100 million to NREL facilities

By / April 29, 2009

The Obama administration continues to put money where its mouth is regarding energy innovation. And, they are doing it in a way that should prick up the ears of ceramic, glass and other advanced materials researchers and industry leaders. DOE Secretary Chu today went to Golden to announce the allocation of nearly $200 million in…

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Chu to make another funding announcement Wednesday

By / April 28, 2009

With all due respect to Flo Rida, Steven Chu and the DOE are second to none when it comes to making it snow (the green stuff) this year, and he is doing it where they know a lot about snow: Golden Colorado and the National Renewable Energy Lab. Expect something big, not only because the…

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NIST releases some details and timing on grid standards

By / April 21, 2009

Apropos to the announcement about DOE moving forward with funding for Smart Grid projects, NIST has unveiled a three-step approach for developing standards for such a grid. Although the DOE is the main organizer and funding source for grid-related projects, NIST has been charged with shepherding the standards that will underpin the next-generation national power…

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DOE jumps into smart grid tech with $4 billion and a call for standards

By / April 21, 2009

The Obama administration seems to have decided to let others share some of the Department of Energy’s glory and let Vice President Joe Biden and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke make the official announcement that DOE is preparing to release funds to develop the “Smart Grid.” Biden and Locke said the DOE is moving to quickly…

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DOE pumping $42 million into fuel cells

By / April 15, 2009

DOE Secretary Steven Chu announced today that it would target $41.9 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding for fuel cell development. The money will be doled out to 12 companies for 14 projects in 10 states (see below). Some of the funding is to subsidize the purchase of fuel cell vehicles (by companies…

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Interview with Ed Herderick, 2009-2010 Materials Societies’ Congressional Fellow

By / April 15, 2009

We present an interview with Ed Herderick, the 2009-2010 Materials Societies Congressional Fellow and occasional contributor to this blog. ACerS, along with The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society and the Materials Research Society announced in March that Herderick has been selected to be the groups’ fellow. The Materials Societies Congressional Fellow program is part of…

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Poneman nominated for DOE Deputy Secretary

By / April 15, 2009

Yesterday, the Obama administration announced that Daniel B. Poneman has been nominated to be a deputy secretary for the DOE. Poneman isn’t a scientist, and his background is decidedly policy oriented, especially in the areas of arms control, nuclear proliferation and export controls. I really don’t know much about him. At first glance, he seems…

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U.S. installed solar capacity up 16%

By / April 6, 2009

A new solar industry organization publication reports that total solar capacity (electric power plus water, pool and space heating) in the United States grew by 1,265 megawatts in 2008, an increase of 16 percent to a total capacity 9,183 MW. The Solar Energy Industry Association’s Year in Review also notes that even though no new…

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