The U.S. Department of Energy hopes to accelerate scientific breakthroughs with an award of $100 million to the country’s Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs). Argonne National Laboratory is home to three EFRCs. Credit: Argonne National Laboratory; Flickr BY NC-SA 2.0

The Department of Energy is fast-tracking the “scientific breakthroughs needed to build the 21st-century energy economy” by awarding $100 million to the country’s Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs).

This is the second $100-million shot in the arm EFRCs have received since last September. Established in 2009, the EFRC program is a multidisciplinary approach to energy problems and solutions and the advancement of solar energy, electrical energy storage, carbon capture and sequestration, materials and chemistry by design, biosciences, and extreme environments.

“Today, we are mobilizing some of our most talented scientists to join forces and pursue the discoveries and breakthroughs that will lay the foundation for our nation’s energy future,” U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz says in a recent DOE release announcing the awards. “The funding we’re announcing today will help fuel scientific and technological innovation.”

More than 200 proposals were received in this second funding competition. 

Ten of the 32 projects granted DOE monies (anywhere from $2 million to $4 million per year for up to four fiscal years) are new; the balance received funding renewals based on their accomplishments thus far. According to the release, 23 of the projects will be led by universities (like this new project at UC Riverside), eight by the department’s national labs (including the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), and one by a nonprofit organization.

The department plans to open the EFRC program to new applications every two years. For information on additional DOE funding opportunities, click here.