The U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has been selected to perform three research projects, worth $2.8 million, as part of a program to advance renewable energy that is funded by Xcel Energy.
The awards are part of NREL's ongoing effort to seek out new and needed areas of research and development and extend the lab's reach through partnerships with companies, universities and other organizations.
One project is to develop a filter that can remove potential pollutants from systems that produce energy from biomass. NREL will manage that $639,000 contract, with Community Power Corp. of Littleton, Colo., and MagStar Technologies of Hopkins, Minn., working as subcontractors.
A second project is for $935,000 in NREL research on a solid state Titania solar cell.
A third project, in which the Colorado School of Mines is prime contractor and NREL is the subcontractor, is to develop new electrocatalysts for proton exchange membrane fuel cells. That contract totals $1.1 million.
"Xcel Energy is excited about the potential for these research projects to result in significant leaps forward in our understanding of new renewable energy technologies," said John Lupo, manager for Xcel's Renewable Development Fund.
A 1994 Minnesota state law established the Renewable Development Fund, which seeks to benefit research and development of renewable energy through payments from utilities with nuclear power facilities in that state.
"Our national lab is pleased to have this opportunity to work with Xcel, the Colorado School of Mines and innovative research and development companies in these important endeavors," said Stan Bull, NREL associate director.
NREL is managed by Midwest Research Institute, Battelle and Bechtel, and is a leading center for research into wind, solar, biomass and other renewable energy technologies.
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