News and Feature Stories

The following news stories take an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at how NREL is advancing energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.

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July 2022

July 28, 2022

Scientist Maps Battery Data for Optimized Energy Storage Solutions

In recognition of his work, NREL recently named Kandler Smith a Distinguished Member of Research Staff for his world-class contributions in battery lifetime modeling, prediction, optimization, and design.

July 27, 2022

Not Just Bread and Beer—Microbes Can Ferment Carbon Dioxide To Make Fuel, Too

Bakers ferment dough for a well-risen loaf of bread. Brewers ferment wheat and barley for a smooth, malty glass of beer. And as nature's foremost bakers and brewers, some microbes can do even more.

July 27, 2022

Explore Colorado's Artificial Oceans and Rivers—in Three Dimensions

Learn how NREL simulates rivers and oceans (and much more) to help accelerate the development of cost-effective and durable hydropower and marine energy technologies.

July 25, 2022

Modeling Exactly Where Distributed Energy Resources Provide the Most Value to the Grid

NREL's Distributed Generation Market Demand Model helps identify where distributed energy resources could provide the most value to the grid, informing new compensation mechanisms.

July 21, 2022

Partnerships Explore Coexistence of Bats and Wind Energy

NREL has awarded three industry teams $1.1 million in funding to support research on bats and wind energy projects. The two-year studies will explore bat behavior around wind turbines and help inform future efforts to improve coexistence of clean, renewable energy with wildlife.

July 20, 2022

NREL's Johney Green Appointed Chairman of National GEM Consortium

Johney Green, associate laboratory director for Mechanical and Thermal Engineering Sciences at NREL, was appointed Chairman of The National GEM Consortium Board of Directors on July 18, 2022. GEM is a 45-year-old national nonprofit organization whose vision is to make scientific impact through underrepresented minority STEM talent in the United States.

July 20, 2022

Federal Aviation Administration Partners With NREL for a Holistic Look at Energy Needs of Electrified Aircraft

With integrated analysis from NREL, the FAA can create safety standards and recommend efficient and resilient airport infrastructure able to support electrified aircraft designs.

July 19, 2022

U.S. and Australia Collaborate To Accelerate Zero-Emission Technology

On July 11, U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm and Australia's Minister for Climate Change and Energy Chris Bowen signed the Australia-United States Net-Zero Technology Acceleration Partnership at the Sydney Energy Forum.

July 18, 2022

Reframing Curtailment: Why Too Much of a Good Thing Is Still a Good Thing

Video explains how having more than enough renewable energy capacity can make the grid more flexible.

July 18, 2022

NREL Researchers Create Order From Quantum Chaos

In a new paper in PNAS, NREL researchers tackle one of the fundamental problems in quantum information science: how to produce pure elements of quantum information at practical temperatures.

July 18, 2022

Build Your Team! Solar Decathlon 2023 Design Challenge Opens Registration

Want to design a zero-energy building while still in school? Register now and form a 2023 Design Challenge team to develop sustainable building expertise and tackle real-world problems through the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon® collegiate competition.

July 15, 2022

NREL Set To Receive $5.4 Million in Funding To Research Turning Buildings Into Carbon Storage Structures

NREL has been selected to receive over $5.4 million from the U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) for the development of technologies that can transform buildings into carbon storage structures.

July 15, 2022

NREL Addresses Energy Challenges for Sustainable Aviation

From sustainable fuels to airport infrastructure analysis to next-gen aircraft, NREL offers solutions for lowering emissions in a sector that is among the most difficult to decarbonize.

July 11, 2022

NREL OpenPATH Tool Enables Expanded E-Bike Pilot Program To Demonstrate Energy-Efficiency Benefits

The transportation sector is one of the largest contributors to the nation's carbon emissions. The fastest-growing form of electric vehicle made to help combat climate change, however, is not an electric car.

July 7, 2022

Solar Decathlon Honored With U.S. Green Building Council Leadership Award

Last month, the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon was honored with the Malcolm Lewis IMPACT! Award during the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Live conference.

July 6, 2022

NREL Innovations Open Door to Industry Collaboration, Commercialization

NREL researchers made for an inventive bunch in fiscal year 2021, even exceeding record-breaking activity in FY '20. A patent issued in November 2021 for compressed gas energy storage, for example, which covers the idea of injecting compressed natural gas into defunct oil and gas fracking sites, accounted for just one of 36 issued patents in FY '21.

July 1, 2022

NREL Scientists Explore How To Make PV Even Greener

How do we reduce the carbon impact of an already green technology?

July 1, 2022

DOE Recognizes NREL Hydrogen Researchers at 2022 Annual Merit Review Awards

The U.S. Department of Energy Hydrogen Program recently honored three NREL researchers for their outstanding achievements at the 2022 Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting.

June 2022

June 29, 2022

News Release: Scientists Look to the Sky in Effort To Mitigate Carbon Problem

A global research effort spearheaded by NREL has assessed two promising technologies to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. While still in the early stages of development, direct air carbon capture and sequestration--together with other carbon dioxide removal strategies--are considered critical to achieving a net-zero greenhouse gas emissions economy.

June 27, 2022

News Release: NREL Analysis Highlights Strategies Beyond Recycling To Bolster Circular Economy for Solar and Battery Technologies

In a new comprehensive literature review, researchers at NREL discovered that alternatives to recycling may have untapped potential to build an effective circular economy for solar photovoltaic and battery technologies, such as reducing the use of virgin materials in manufacturing, reusing for new applications, and extending product life spans.

June 23, 2022

News Release: NREL Names Jennifer Logan to Leadership Team as Chief Financial Officer

Jennifer Logan joins NREL from the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility in Newport News, Virginia, where she has served as chief financial officer and business/finance director. She will start with NREL on June 27, 2022.

June 17, 2022

Powering Ghana: USAID and NREL Provide Technical Assistance To Develop First Hydro-Solar Plant in West Africa

The first West African hydro-solar plant was deployed in Ghana in January, with technical support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

June 16, 2022

Q&A With Robynne Murray: Rebel With A Cause--And an Ice Axe

Growing up in Canada, Robynne Murray got her hands dirty clam digging in the Bay of Fundy. Now, at NREL, the mechanical engineer likes getting her hands dirty, manufacturing and evaluating new materials--like recyclable plastics and carbon fibers--for wind and tidal turbines and electric vehicles.

June 15, 2022

12 New Remote and Island Communities Join the Journey to Energy Resilience

The latest additions to the Energy Transitions Initiative Partnership Project (ETIPP) more than double the number of communities advancing local energy goals through this DOE-funded, multi-lab, multi-partner effort.

June 15, 2022

Co-Optima Crosses the Finish Line

Just as the wheels keep turning on cars, trucks, and trains, the planet keeps spinning in its orbit. All the while, climate change is accelerating, along with the dire need to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions responsible for global warming.

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