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NREL Staff Recognized by DOE for Outstanding Achievements at 2016 Annual Merit Review

June 8, 2016

The U.S. Department of Energy recently honored eight NREL staff members for their outstanding achievements at the Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting. See the full list of 2016 Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program award winners and Vehicle Technologies Office award winners.

Joint Fuel Cell Technologies and Vehicle Technologies Office Award - U.S. DRIVE Cradle-2-Grave Working Group

Mary Biddy and Todd Ramsden of NREL were recognized for outstanding efforts as part of the U.S. DRIVE Cradle-2-Grave Working Group team. On June 1, this team published the results of its multi-year effort in a report titled "Cradle-to-Grave Lifecycle Analysis of U.S. Light-Duty Vehicle-Fuel Pathways: A Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Economic Assessment of Current (2015) and Future (2025-2030) Technologies." This work takes a deep dive into the opportunities for low-carbon vehicles and fuels, providing a comprehensive lifecycle analysis of the cost and greenhouse gas emissions of a variety of vehicle-fuel pathways as well as the levelized cost of driving and cost of avoided greenhouse gas emissions. DOE, its partners, and the clean energy community will be able to cite this valuable work innumerable times.

Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program Award - Hydrogen Infrastructure Research and Station Technology (H2FIRST) Team

NREL's Christopher Ainscough and Danny Terlip, along with Joseph Pratt and Terry Johnson of Sandia National Laboratories, were recognized for their outstanding contributions to the widespread commercialization of hydrogen infrastructure, including the successful deployment of the Hydrogen Station Equipment Performance (HyStEP) device. The primary purpose of the HyStEP device is to measure the performance of hydrogen fueling station dispensers with respect to the required fueling protocol standard. The HyStEP device was developed and demonstrated to reduce the time to commission hydrogen stations and can save many hours and resources because each automaker will not need to send individual fuel cell electric vehicles to every station to validate performance.

Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program Award - Bryan Pivovar

Bryan Pivovar was recognized for his outstanding dedication and contributions in developing the H2 at Scale national-lab-wide "big idea." Bryan coordinated more than 60 contributors from 16 national labs and has cultivated support from multiple disciplinary areas across DOE. Bryan and the entire H2 at Scale lab team were recognized for their efforts, including conducting preliminary analyses and developing a white paper, demonstrating approaches to deeply decarbonize multiple energy sectors. H2 at Scale can enable greater market penetration of renewables by generating hydrogen as an energy carrier, which can then be used for energy storage or as a feedstock or fuel across transportation, stationary power, and industrial applications.

Manufacturing R&D Award - Michael Ulsh

Michael Ulsh was recognized for his responsiveness and continued contributions to the advancement of fuel cell manufacturing and quality control. Mike has demonstrated new diagnostics to detect defects in fuel cell roll-to-roll goods for the Fuel Cell Technologies Office. His efforts have led to new opportunities in quality control and quality assurance, which are helping to solve manufacturing issues with fuel cell technologies that are now beginning to have impact in battery manufacturing. His diagnostic work has improved membrane material fabrication and, for the first time ever, this intellectual property is being commercialized through a tech transfer opportunity, paving the way for U.S. manufacturing leadership.

Market Transformation and Technology Validation Award - Melanie Caton

Melanie Caton was recognized for her continued commitment to the advancement of hydrogen infrastructure and the tremendous job she has done as the project leader for the Brentwood Advanced Hydrogen Technologies Station being installed in Washington, D.C. She has worked effectively with multiple stakeholders, including federal agencies, city planning, code organizations, and technology developers, to maintain tight schedules. Her continued dedication and leadership skills have led the project from infancy to anticipated completion in July 2016.

Vehicle Technologies Office Special Recognition Award - Kevin Bennion

Kevin Bennion was recognized for his expertise and unique experience in motor designs and motor thermal management as part of the electric drive technologies research team. He has provided significant insights and inputs to the motor research area. His coordination with other labs and industry has been critical to developing and enabling motor innovations to eliminate rare earth magnets. His designs emphasize improved motor performance using improved thermal management technologies.

—Julia Thomas