U.S. Department of Energy will fund applied research and development to accelerate decarbonization of American industry

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) recently announced its intent to issue a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) that will support DOE’s efforts to decarbonize the American industrial sector and move the U.S. toward net-zero carbon emissions.  

The industrial sector currently accounts for one third of domestic, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. DOE’s new FOA will support the advancement of a range of decarbonization technologies that can shrink the carbon footprint of America’s vital industries.  

Decarbonizing industry presents a difficult challenge, given the wide range of energy inputs and complexity of industrial processes. It will require the U.S. to pursue multiple strategies in parallel. DOE has identified four key pathways to industrial decarbonization: energy efficiency; industrial electrification; low carbon fuels, feedstocks, and energy sources; and carbon capture, utilization, and storage. 

The “Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonization FOA” is expected to include the following topics, applying the four industrial decarbonization pathways to energy-intensive American industries where decarbonization technologies could have the greatest impact:  

  • Decarbonizing Chemicals: This topic will focus on unit operations, including advanced separations and advanced reactors, and alternative production and process heating technologies to reduce carbon impacts from the production of high-volume chemicals.
  • Decarbonizing Iron and Steel: This topic will focus on advancements that enable decarbonization in ore-based or scrap-based iron and steelmaking operations, and that convert other existing iron and steelmaking ancillary and thermal processes to use clean fuels or electricity.
  • Decarbonizing Food and Beverage Products: This topic will focus on innovative technologies that decarbonize process heating operations within the food and beverage sector.
  • Decarbonizing Cement and Concrete: This topic will focus on next generation cement formulations and process routes, utilization of low carbon fuels, and carbon capture technologies.
  • Decarbonizing Paper and Forest Products: This topic will focus on novel paper and wood drying technologies, and innovative pulping and paper forming technologies.
  • Cross-sector Decarbonization Technologies: This topic will focus on innovations in low temperature waste heat to power, thermal energy storage, and industrial heat pump technologies. 

DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office plans to issue the FOA via EERE Exchange in August 2022. EERE envisions awarding multiple financial assistance awards in the form of cooperative agreements. The estimated period of performance for each award will be approximately 24-36 months.

For more information about this NOI, visit the Advanced Manufacturing Office website.

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