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September 25, 2023 | Tom Ballard

Local groups awarded funds for wind energy and hydrogen work

ORNL received a total of $4.8 million for two projects, while IACMI received $2 million for its project and UTK another $1 million.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI) were among recipients of a total of $72 million in wind energy-focused projects announced by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Separately, the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) was one of 16 across 13 states receiving funding to accelerate the research, development, and demonstration of affordable clean hydrogen technologies.

In the case of the wind-focused work, a total of $6.8 million was announced for three projects – two involving ORNL and the third for IACMI. The funding for the wind projects includes $27 million from the “Bipartisan Infrastructure Law” for 15 projects to support research, development, and community engagement to accelerate the equitable and sustainable deployment of offshore and land-based wind energy. The remaining $45 million will go to 14 projects that will both make domestic manufacturing for these technologies quicker and less expensive.

  • ORNL was awarded $2.8 million under the “Bipartisan Infrastructure Law” for a project focused on advanced technology that is needed to transmit large amounts of electricity from offshore wind over long distances.
  • IACMI, officially Collaborative Composite Solutions, and ORNL separately were awarded $2 million each for work on the integration of additive manufacturing techniques specific to the production of large wind blades, enhancing efficiency and adaptability in the blade creation process.

According to the DOE news release, the goals of these projects align with DOE’s Offshore Wind Strategy, the Offshore Wind Supply Chain Road Map, the interagency Floating Offshore Wind Shot, and the priorities identified in DOE’s 2022 Wind Energy Supply Chain Deep Dive Assessment.

UTK received $1 million for a project titled “Highly Active Hexagonal Boron Nitride Catalysts for the Dehydrogenation of Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carriers.”

The news releases for both announcements noted that “selection for award negotiations is not a commitment by DOE to issue an award or provide funding. Before funding is issued, DOE and the applicants will undergo a negotiation process, and DOE may cancel negotiations and rescind the selection for any reason during that time.”

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