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Program News

Access news stories from NREL's research programs.

December 26, 2018

A Big Year for Wind: NREL's Top Five Industry Takeaways of 2018

The wind industry is booming now that wind generation has become the cheapest source of new power in multiple U.S. markets, even without incentives. And--spoiler alert--early-stage research shows promise for driving down wind power prices even further.

December 21, 2018

Better Explanation of Coalescence-Related Defects Garners Journal Spotlight

New paper aids researchers in understanding defects in coalescing materials, helping to develop low-cost substrates for solar cells.

December 20, 2018

Inspiring the Next Generation of NREL Researchers

Senior NREL researcher Alicen Kandt frequently volunteers to speak with college students and young girls about careers in engineering and renewable energy.

December 20, 2018

Expert from NREL Testifies Before Canada House of Commons

ASHRAE President and NREL senior research advisor Sheila Hayter testified before the Canada House of Commons Standing Committee on Natural Resources in November.

December 20, 2018

Q&A with Mike Callahan: Modernizing Energy Systems

Mike Callahan is the group manager for the Applied Engineering team, a new group at NREL that supports projects in the areas of resiliency, microgrids, building systems, and new technology testing and evaluation.

December 19, 2018

Field Validation Campaign of German-Designed Rotor Blades Measures Adaptation to Strong Winds

The German Aerospace Center has partnered with NREL to investigate how well rotor blades designed with bending-torsion coupling handle strongly variable wind speeds.

December 14, 2018

Costs Continue to Decline for Residential and Commercial Photovoltaics in 2018

Two new reports from NREL track the evolving costs of PV and establish a new cost benchmark for PV-plus-storage.

December 14, 2018

NREL Garners Top Sustainability Honor at Data Center Dynamics Awards

International award cements NREL’s status as a world leader in energy-efficient and sustainable data centers.

December 13, 2018

NREL Powers Up GameChanger, Announces First Cohort of Start-Ups

The Shell GameChanger™ Accelerator Powered by NREL (GCxN) has announced its first round of start-up innovators – four companies focused on developing long-term energy storage and advancing the grid of the future.

December 10, 2018

Bioenergy Scientists Collaborate with Industry to Convey Feedstock Value, Improve Biomass Conversion Processes

A team of NREL scientists partnered with Forest Concepts to perform detailed thermochemical conversion simulations for biomass feedstocks. The simulations relate feedstock attributes to expected product yields and necessary pyrolysis conversion process conditions.

December 10, 2018

NREL Expands Research in Geothermal and Solar Desalination

NREL scientists have a long history of successfully analyzing geothermal and solar energy data. But they are now actively researching desalination capabilities by partnering with technology leaders on several groundbreaking projects. The purpose is to explore geothermal and solar-thermal technologies for creating fresh water from otherwise unusable water.

December 4, 2018

NREL-Led ExaWind Project Demonstrates New Capability for Simulating Modern Wind Turbines

NREL and partners have created a new blade-resolved model of a large modern wind turbine, enabling scientists and engineers to begin understanding the complex flow physics in multi-turbine wind farms that will take advantage of future exascale modeling and simulation capability.

November 30, 2018

NREL Leadership in Grid-Mod Projects Highlights National Progress

The challenge to modernize our grid is not a maintenance task or an everyday repair. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Grid Modernization Laboratory Consortium (GMLC) is responding to a grid transformation unlike anything the nation has experienced.

November 30, 2018

Q&A with Greg Martin: Real-Time Operations of the ESIF

Electrical Engineer Greg Martin is the Research Operations Engineering group manager for ESI. Martin works on strategic visioning and planning for ESIF, and with his background expertise on power electronics and advanced inverters and power systems, he's bringing exciting new insights for future capabilities. Read our conversation with Martin to learn about the new capabilities he's working on at ESIF.

November 29, 2018

NREL and Mines Launch Transformational Grad Program

Powering our future society will require energy systems and infrastructure that are more expansive, secure, and resilient than today's. It will also require thought leaders and innovators who can capably and creatively guide this vital energy sector transition. To address these needs, NREL and Colorado School of Mines are piloting a novel Advanced Energy Systems (AES) graduate program in fall 2019. Learn more.

November 23, 2018

Denver Business Journal Recognizes Richard Adams for Convening Innovators and Investors

Richard Adams builds energy--around technology, among investors, and through foundations.

November 20, 2018

Using CSP to Improve Frequency Stability of Power Grid

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and General Electric (GE) have joined forces to tackle an issue that is relatively new ground for the power industry. Five years ago, most people couldn't envision high penetration on the grid of variable-generation renewables such as photovoltaics (PV) and wind.

November 19, 2018

Researcher Rockets to Global Recognition for Breakthroughs in Battery Safety and Performance

NREL's Donal Finegan recently received a Global Young Researcher Award from the Institution of Chemical Engineers for his contributions to NASA's battery safety program and NREL's advanced diagnostics. Not yet 30 years old, Finegan is widely viewed as a leader in the international battery community, responsible for significant advancements in safety, diagnostic techniques, and design approaches.

November 13, 2018

Philippines Government Aims to Transform its Power System through the REZ Transmission Planning Process

NREL's Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) Transmission Planning Process served as a valuable guide for the planned approach to integrate transmission expansion and renewable energy generation planning in the Philippines.

November 5, 2018

REopt Lite Adds New Energy Optimization Capabilities with Wind, Custom Rate Tariff, Critical Load Builder, and User Dashboard Features

The REopt Lite web tool's new wind optimization module lets building owners and energy managers evaluate the economic viability of grid-connected wind at a site, in addition to solar photovoltaics and battery storage.

November 1, 2018

Molecular Scientists Unlock Sustainable Route Toward Hydrocarbons

A computational modeling team in NREL's Biosciences Center made a significant discovery regarding the key aspects of a cytochrome P450 enzyme that enable it to transform fatty acids directly to olefinic hydrocarbons, an important constituent of gasoline.

October 31, 2018

Q&A with Bryan Palmintier: Pulling Together the Pieces with Systems Thinking

Bryan Palmintier's broad scientific career prior and his leadership in the outdoors have made him a cornerstone of many grid projects at NREL. Our Q&A with Palmintier reviews his current work, and how he became such a versatile scientist in energy systems integration.

October 31, 2018

NREL Veteran Supports Air Force Resilience Efforts

Tony Jimenez, a recently-retired Army Reservist of 25 years who spent nine months working as an NREL employee, has played a key role in supporting the military's goal of enhancing installation resilience.

October 30, 2018

Assessing the Wind Power Potential in Bangladesh

New USAID-NREL study uses improved wind resource data sets to determine the feasibility and risks involved in using wind power as a renewable energy resource in Bangladesh.

October 30, 2018

New Mobility Paradigms Influence Electric Vehicle Charging Requirements

Ride-hailing companies' growing interest in operating electric vehicles (EVs) could trigger a significant increase in the demand for public fast chargers. Despite their ability to charge EVs quickly, fast-charging stations are not yet commonplace due to high installation and operating costs. Boosting their utilization could go a long way toward driving down costs. But what is the right number of fast-charging stations in a given area and where should they be located?

October 29, 2018

Natural Gas Emissions: Measure Top-down or Bottom-up?

Study reconciles persistent gap in natural gas methane emissions measurements.

October 25, 2018

Arizona Utility and NREL Launch One of the Largest-to-Date Home Energy Storage Studies

NREL and Arizona utility Salt River Project are studying the benefits and impacts of battery energy systems to both customers and utilities.

October 24, 2018

For Work on High Efficiency Photovoltaics, Dan Friedman Named APS Fellow

Dan Friedman, manager of NREL's High Efficiency Crystalline Photovoltaics Group, has been elected as a fellow of the American Physical Society for this work on III-V semiconductor physics and multijunction photovoltaic science, including numerous device efficiency records.

October 8, 2018

New III-V Device Concept Combines Two Structures for Lower-Cost Impact, More Applications

NREL has recently combined two structures of III-V materials into one, providing a "two-for-the-price-of-one" benefit. The combination enables novel, potentially record-setting, multijunction solar cells.

October 4, 2018

How to Celebrate National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Day

Next week the National Renewable Energy Laboratory will join the U.S. Department of Energy and others across the United States to celebrate the fourth National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Day on October 8--10.08--a date chosen to represent the atomic weight of hydrogen (1.008).

October 3, 2018

NREL's Biomass Analysis Tools Celebrate a Decade as the Industry Standard

After nearly 10 years, the NREL-developed High Throughput Pipeline Tools have been delivering solid biomass composition analysis for researchers around the world.

September 28, 2018

Q&A with Barry Mather: Bridging the Gap from Power Electronic Devices to Systems

As the group manager for Integrated Devices and Systems (IDS) within NREL's Power Systems Engineering Center and chair of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Power Electronics Society Denver chapter, Barry Mather considers himself an honest broker--balancing the needs for a reliable grid while also increasing the amount of distributed energy resources (DER) integrated into the grid. Mather sat down with us to answer some questions about his career at the lab and research in his group. The following has been edited for length.

September 28, 2018

Views of the ESIF: Five Years Back, Five Years Forward

In celebration of five years since the ESIF's dedication, the facility's leadership reflect on its use now, and looking ahead.

September 28, 2018

Crosscutting Grid Research Facilities Provide Industry Launch Pad for Utility-Scale Evaluation

New grid integration technologies at the National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) have introduced a vast range in grid research capabilities--from multimegawatt-scale wind and solar technologies to advanced energy storage devices, transformers, and protection equipment.

September 28, 2018

Nitrilation Process Produces Acrylonitrile, Attention, and Awards

NREL's clean, cost-competitive nitrilation process to produce a bio-based acrylonitrile is grabbing attention...and awards. This summer, alone, the process technology has been recognized with the Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) Mid-Continent Region Notable Technology Development Award, the CO-Labs Governor's Award, and has been named a 2018 R&D 100 Award finalist.

September 26, 2018

NREL and Shell Launch Accelerator Program for Emerging Technologies

The Shell GameChanger Accelerator Powered by NREL will leverage an established national laboratory-industry collaborative model to help startups de-risk and accelerate emerging clean energy technologies on their path to market.

September 26, 2018

PV Cities Training Program Powers Solar Adoption Across America's Cities and Counties

To aid cites in solar adoption, NREL launched the City and County Solar PV Training Program, or PV Cities, in January 2018. The five-month program was designed specifically for cities and counties and aimed to increase the deployment of midscale solar PV systems by engaging stakeholders to develop deployment solutions and empowering city and county staff.

September 24, 2018

For PhD Students, HOPE Workshop Highlights Real-World Applications of Solar Technology

The Hands-On PV Workshop brings graduate students from across the United States to NREL each year to increase their knowledge about photovoltaics and see practical applications of PV technologies.

September 21, 2018

NREL R&D Funding Will Fuel New CSP Research

With seven new projects, NREL will elevate research in concentrating solar power (CSP). The projects are funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) through a National Laboratory call for proposals.

September 19, 2018

Beyond the Grid: How Micro-grids Can Help Sub-Saharan Africa Achieve Universal Energy Access

NREL supports the Power Africa Beyond the Grid Program by helping to build an environment that could enable bankable, microgrid investments. NREL recently published two reports in support of this effort.

September 18, 2018

Editorial Positions with Journals Strengthen NREL Connections

Two NREL researchers from NREL's Transportation and Hydrogen Systems Center, Robert McCormick and Sreekant Narumanchi, have recently received editorial appointments from leading journals in their fields.

September 17, 2018

Geothermal Technologies Could Push Energy Storage Beyond Batteries

Three new projects at will tap geothermal energy to advance new energy storage applications as part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Grid Modernization Initiative.

September 14, 2018

How the Philippine Grid Could Achieve 30%--or Even 50%--Renewable Energy by 2030

Through a project sponsored by USAID and the Philippine Department of Energy (PDOE), the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) recently released a report titled, "Greening the Grid: Solar and Wind Integration Study for the Luzon-Visayas System of the Philippines."

September 12, 2018

NREL Analysts Take a First Look at the Florida Duck Curve, and How Flexibility Could Help

New analysis examines how solar deployment may impact grid operations in Florida, an understudied but important market.

September 6, 2018

NREL Interns Energize the Laboratory

NREL Summer Interns unbox their potential to explore their passions in renewable energy.

August 31, 2018

Q&A with Kristen Ardani: From Research to Rooftops

As the Program Lead for Solar Data, Analysis, and Tools in the Integrated Applications Center, Kristen Ardani is making widespread solar deployment a reality.

August 31, 2018

Competition in Colombia Sparks Renewable Energy Expansion

Colombia will host its first renewable energy auction in 2019, hoping to boost its renewable portfolio and buffer its hydro-dominated energy sector against debilitating drought seasons. Learn how NREL expertise is helping the Colombian government transform its energy sector.

August 31, 2018

A Hidden GEM of NREL

NREL is preparing the next generation of innovative researchers through an invaluable partnership with The National GEM Consortium.

August 28, 2018

NREL's Eric Payne Wins Technology Transfer Professional of the Year Award

From 2012 to 2018, NREL witnessed a 68% increase in invention submissions, an 89% increase in the total number of intellectual property agreements, and a 24% increase in overall license revenue. These achievements would not be possible without an exceptional licensing team in the Technology Transfer Office, and notably, an outstanding team lead. The Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) Mid-Continent Region has chosen Senior Licensing Executive Eric Payne to receive the 2018 Technology Transfer Professional of the Year Award.

August 23, 2018

U.S. Offshore Wind Technology Market Accelerates in 2017

New state-level commitments, advances in permitting and energy offtake processes, and strategic research investments buoyed the U.S. offshore wind market in 2017. The offshore wind project development pipeline in the United States includes 25,464 megawatts (MW) of planned generating capacity as of June 2018, with projects representing 2,000 MW expected to commence commercial operation by 2023.

August 23, 2018

Data Center Water-Savings Win Wins

NREL and partners honored with Federal Energy and Water Management Award for resourceful data center cooling.

August 16, 2018

Webinar August 22: Development of Real-Time Characterization Tools and Associated Efforts to Assist Membrane Electrode Assembly Manufacturing Scale-Up

In this DOE Fuel Cell Technologies Office webinar, Michael Ulsh of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory will present an overview of early-stage research and development related to manufacturing of fuel cell membrane electrode assembly materials.

August 16, 2018

Beta Version of MFI Tool Available for Testing

NREL's MFI tool can model a wide range of manufacturing scenarios. Members of industry, academia, other members of the research community, and the general public are encouraged to beta test the newest version of the tool.

August 15, 2018

NREL Acquires Powerful New High-Performance Computing System

Eagle will be 3.5 times more powerful than current system dedicated to energy research

August 13, 2018

Sustainable Mobility: The Transportation World Beyond Tomorrow is Here Today

NREL's sustainable mobility research is moving beyond vehicles and roads, investigating the best way to get people and goods where they need to go with maximum convenience, efficiency, and affordability, while minimizing traffic congestion.

August 13, 2018

NREL Research Shows HOV Lanes and Purchase Rebates Are Effective Incentives for Plug-In Electric Vehicle Purchase

What does it take to persuade people who are considering the purchase of an electric vehicle to actually buy one? That burning question spurred analysts from NREL to find out.

August 9, 2018

Research Center to Explore New Class of Semiconductor

The unique material properties of hybrid organic/inorganic semiconductors could unlock new energy technologies. The goal of the new Center for Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Semiconductors for Energy (CHOISE) is to better understand and control the emergent phenomena of spin, charge, and light/matter interactions in these materials.

August 7, 2018

NREL Joins Partners and Peers for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Information Sharing and Review

NREL researchers recently participated in a vast amount of knowledge sharing about the growing hydrogen and fuel cell market and the early-stage research and development (R&D) that supports it.

August 3, 2018

Sreekant Narumanchi First NREL Researcher to Win an ASME K-16/EPPD Clock Award

Each year the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) elects a winner for the K-16/ Electronic and Photonic Packaging Division (EPPD) Clock Award. Advanced Power Electronics and Electric Machines (APEEM) Team Leader Sreekant Narumanchi of the Transportation and Hydrogen Systems Center (THSC) is receiving this honor for 2018.

July 31, 2018

International Partnership Revolutionizes Cross-Continental Travel with Alternative Fuels

Drivers relying on alternative fuels throughout the United States and Canada, especially those near the border, can now travel with more confidence than ever with the updated Alternative Fueling Station Locator. NREL and Natural Resources Canada combined their stations data to revolutionize this powerful U.S. Department of Energy tool, paving the way for drivers who rely on electricity, ethanol, biodiesel, natural gas, propane, and hydrogen to travel between the two countries seamlessly.

July 26, 2018

Envisioning Net-Zero Emission Energy Systems

NREL researchers contribute to a major journal article describing pathways to net-zero emissions for particularly difficult-to-decarbonize economic sectors.

July 25, 2018

Q&A with Fatima Al Suwaidi: Visiting UAE Engineer Details How NREL and Masdar are Helping Shape Her Career Goals

Fatima is contributing to analysis work in the Integrated Applications Center at NREL. Her research spans floating photovoltaics, sustainable transportation, and the energy-water-food nexus, with a specific focus on economic viability analysis. This is a discussion of Fatima's work at both Masdar and NREL.

July 25, 2018

Guangdong Zhu: Tapping Varied Experience to Advance Geothermal Energy

Guangdong Zhu's career has involved modeling work with a variety of high-temperature fluids, including geothermal resources and concentrating solar power.

July 25, 2018

PRECISE: Expanding Distributed Energy Systems from the West to the East

Pre-configuration, quasi-static time series, and autonomous operation are all features contributing to the expansion of distributed energy systems, thanks to advanced inverters and an NREL- and Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD)-developed platform called PRECISE.

July 19, 2018

Community Banks and Credit Unions Report Success with Solar Loans, NREL Report Finds

A new NREL report finds that community and regional financial institutions , such as community banks and credit unions, are experiencing positive early performance of loans for photovoltaic systems.

July 18, 2018

SolarPILOT Released as Open Source; Tool Used to Optimize Solar Power Towers

Used by researchers and project developers, NREL's Solar Power Tower Integrated Layout and Optimization Tool (SolarPILOT(TM)) generates and characterizes power tower systems or systems using central receivers. The software--along with its companion ray-tracing tool SolTrace--is now being made available as open source on NREL's GitHub page. Both the SolarPILOT and SolTrace GitHub projects are open to contributions from users, and a webinar planned for July 18th will present the open-source projects.

July 12, 2018

NREL-Developed Tribal Energy Atlas Puts Resource Data in Tribes' Hands

The new Tribal Energy Atlas is a first-of-its-kind interactive geospatial application that allows tribes and others to conduct their own analyses of installed energy projects and resource potential on tribal lands.

July 12, 2018

Updated Baseline Cost and Performance Data for Electricity Generation Technologies

NREL has released the 2018 Annual Technology Baseline, updating a key source of reliable electricity generation technology cost and performance data used to support and inform electric sector analysis in the United States.

July 11, 2018

First Standard for Chemical Characterization of Bio-Oil Approved by ASTM: NREL Paves the Way Towards Commercialization

The path toward biofuel commercialization became easier with a recent NREL-developed bio-oil standard that was approved by ASTM International. The standard quantifies the total carbonyl content of complex pyrolysis bio-oils through a faster and more reliable titration method.

July 9, 2018

Cutting the Cord: NREL Demonstrates Wirelessly Charged Electric Vehicle

NREL recently launched a one-year demonstration of an all-electric Zenith Motors van, modified to enable wireless charging. In addition to determining whether the technology is a viable option for eventual electrification of NREL's campus transportation system, the demonstration is bolstering NREL's pioneering exploration of the transformative nature of wireless charging.

July 9, 2018

NREL Analysis Explores Demand-Side Impacts of a Highly Electrified Future

The second report in the Electrification Futures Study series presents scenarios reflecting a wide range of possible electricity demand growth through 2050 driven by the adoption of end-use electric technologies.

June 29, 2018

NREL Transportation and Hydrogen Researchers Recognized by DOE for Outstanding Achievements at 2018 Annual Merit Reviews

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently honored 16 NREL researchers for their outstanding achievements at the Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meetings for the Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program and Vehicle Technologies Office. The annual meetings provide researchers leading projects funded by the Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program and the Vehicle Technologies Office with an opportunity to share accomplishments with representatives from DOE, industry, and other labs.

June 27, 2018

Advanced Thermal Management for Power-Dense Power Electronics and Electric Motors Improves EVs

As EVs are further developed, new materials and enhanced configurations to improve the thermal management systems of power electronics and electric motors is necessary for peak EV performance. Thermal management continues to be a growing field as components used in various applications are required to be smaller, more affordable, and more powerful.

June 27, 2018

NREL Steers America Toward Energy Independence

Innovation Delivers Transportation Freedom

June 25, 2018

NREL, DOE, and U.S. Automakers Join Together to Transform Mobility Future

Representatives from Fiat Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, and the U.S. Department of Energy met with NREL researchers who are developing and integrating vehicle and infrastructure technologies with big data and communication systems to connect and automate transportation. With the advent of connected and autonomous vehicle technologies and integration with renewable power sources, the grid, buildings, and other systems, NREL is not only looking for ways to help reduce transportation costs, but also plan ahead as the U.S. population shifts to urban mega-regions in collaboration with industry partners.

June 18, 2018

REopt Lite's Application Programming Interface Boosts Solar+Storage Analysis Flexibility

NREL released an API for REopt(TM) Lite, enabling streamlined integration with other tools inside and outside NREL and allowing building owners and researchers to evaluate the economics of grid-connected solar PV and battery storage at multiple commercial sites. The API opens opportunities for research collaboration and broader market impact, driving solar and storage deployment.

June 18, 2018

Research Spotlights Energy Efficiency of Ride-Hailing Services

NREL hosted a recent meeting with representatives from industry and academia to discuss research exploring the energy impact of ride-hailing services. The growing use of such services has the potential to disrupt traditional car ownership paradigms, buoyed by the surge in younger consumers who only know a world with technology at their fingertips. Research indicates that ride-hailing options should be networked, electrified, shared, and mobile-friendly to best realize improvements in road congestion, energy use, and air quality.

June 18, 2018

International Interest in NREL's Fuels and Engines Research

The European Union's goal is for 10% of all of Europe's transportation fuels to come from renewable sources by 2020. In April, CNBC World's international news program "Sustainable Energy" came to NREL to spotlight how the lab's breakthrough biofuels research is advancing progress toward that ambitious objective.

June 15, 2018

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Bus Evaluation Project Reveals Success for Transit Partner

Results from a National Renewable Energy Laboratory evaluation of hydrogen fuel cell electric buses (FCEBs) at Alameda Contra-Costa Transit District (AC Transit) in California show that FCEBs have made significant progress toward commercialization, surpassing Department of Energy's ultimate technical targets for fuel cell operating hours and reliability.

June 12, 2018

Enhanced Resilience Features Help REopt Lite Users Size Solar+Storage Systems to Support Critical Building Loads

NREL's REopt Lite web tool now offers enhanced resilience analysis capabilities that allow building owners and energy managers to size PV and storage systems to meet a specified outage duration and compare the sizing and costs of a resilient system with a system sized to maximize savings.

June 12, 2018

Trends in Ground Transportation to and from Airport Reflect Nationwide Mobility Shift

Passenger transportation and aviation systems are on the frontline of innovation in moving more people faster, cheaper, and better—fueled in part by greater convenience and increased choices. An NREL study focuses on the growing use and impacts of ride-hailing services to and from airports, with implications for the future of ride-hailing, parking, and car rental services in cities.

May 31, 2018

Collaboration Initiates New Early-Stage Research

The U.S. Department of Energy’s interest in increasing national energy security and lowering the cost of transporting goods spurred a $3 million effort to support cost-shared research to improve high-efficiency natural gas engines. NREL is collaborating with Argonne National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories to further this early-stage research.

May 31, 2018

Planning a City, Virtually

NREL has developed an immersive visualization environment to help plan for Denver's new smart community, Peña Station NEXT.

May 30, 2018

When the Gears Stop Turning

NREL teams with PG&E to stabilize grid frequency with synthetic inertia.

May 29, 2018

New CSP Funding Is Getting Hotter

NREL has received $7 million from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop the next generation of liquid-phase concentrating solar power technology.

May 22, 2018

Middle School Students Take the STEM Wheel

On May 19, NREL hosted its 19th annual Middle School Electric Car Competition, where students raced solar and lithium-ion powered cars that they designed and built.

May 22, 2018

Enhanced Vehicle Simulation Tool Enables Wider Array of Analyses

New and enhanced versions of NREL's Future Automotive Systems Technology Simulator (FASTSim) are now available for free download in Python and Microsoft Excel formats at FASTSim provides a quick and simple way to compare powertrains and estimate the impact of technology improvements on light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicle efficiency, performance, cost, and battery life.

May 18, 2018

Access to Data Accelerates Innovation and Adoption of Geothermal Technologies

The future of the geothermal sector is being driven by data-informed decisions and research. NREL's geothermal team is developing several tools and platforms to streamline the collection and sharing of geothermal data sets, enabling new breakthroughs in geothermal research and development.

May 17, 2018

Research Turbine Leaves Legacy in Its Wake

The conclusion of a successful multiyear industry partnership will soon alter the landscape for Denver-area residents. This week, GE will remove the largest of the megawatt-scale research turbines at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) National Wind Technology Center (NWTC), located near Boulder, Colorado.

May 16, 2018

NREL's EVI-Pro Lite Tool Paves the Way for Future Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Planning

A new NREL-developed tool called EVI-Pro Lite is helping communities across the country evaluate existing electric vehicle charging infrastructure and determine future needs for charging infrastructure to support increased regional adoption of EVs. Using data from personal vehicle travel patterns, electric vehicle attributes, and charging station characteristics, the tool projects demand for charging infrastructure by state or city/urban area.

May 14, 2018

Webinar May 17: Fuel Cell Electric Bus Progress toward Meeting Technical Targets

In this DOE Fuel Cell Technologies Office webinar, NREL's Leslie Eudy will present the most recent performance results from fuel cell electric buses operated by six transit agencies and discuss progress made toward meeting technical targets.

May 8, 2018

Remember the Algae that Went to Space? Here's What Happened Next

NREL scientists and Chatfield High School students are seeing the results of their collaborative experiment that sent a novel bioreactor housing two different strains of algae into space last summer.

May 2, 2018

Analysis Quantifies California's Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure Needs

How many electric vehicle chargers does the State of California need to accommodate 1.3 million EVs? That was the subject of a collaborative study conducted by the California Energy Commission (CEC) in partnership with NREL with respect to the state's 2025 zero-emission vehicle goal.

April 30, 2018

Q&A with Andy Walker: The Ins and Outs of Renewable Energy Optimization

NREL researcher Andy Walker sits down to discuss a new role as research fellow, and his work in developing renewable energy optimization techniques.

April 25, 2018

Low- and Moderate-Income Residences Can Help Modernize the U.S. Electric Grid

Pairing solar photovoltaics with rooftops of low and moderate-income housing represents an opportunity to help modernize the U.S. electric grid and improve energy affordability in low-income communities

April 24, 2018

NREL Researchers Create New Materials With Unusual Properties

Few scientists reference Kurt Vonnegut in their academic journals, but researchers at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) found the parallels between his work and theirs compelling. Both invoke polymorphism--the ability of a material to adopt multiple crystal structures.

April 18, 2018

KULR Technology Exclusively Licenses Award-Winning Battery Internal Short Circuit Device

Under agreement with NREL, KULR will be the exclusive manufacturing, distribution, and marketing partner for the patented, award-winning Battery Internal Short Circuit (ISC) Device to industrial, research, and design clients. Developed by NREL and NASA, the Battery ISC Device revolutionizes the way lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are evaluated so designs can be improved before batteries hit store shelves.

April 18, 2018

CAEBAT Model Featured on American Chemical Society Journal Tenth Anniversary Issue Cover

NREL's collaboration with Purdue University's School of Mechanical Engineering has yielded new insights for lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery electrodes at the microstructural level, that can lead to improvements in electric vehicle (EV) battery performance and lifespan. A stochastic algorithm developed by Purdue University, as part of NREL's Advanced Computer-Aided Battery Engineering Consortium, is prominently displayed on the cover of the 10th anniversary issue of American Chemical Society's Applied Materials and Interfaces. The NREL/Purdue team's corresponding article, "Secondary-Phase Stochastics in Lithium-Ion Battery Electrodes" detailing the research and resulting discoveries, is showcased inside.

April 18, 2018

Abundant Renewable Energy Resources Exist in Lao PDR

A clearer picture of which renewable energy resources can benefit the Lao People's Democratic Republic has emerged from a new report published by NREL.

April 18, 2018

Co-Optima Transportation Ingenuity Capitalizes on Strengths of U.S. Energy Resources and Existing Infrastructure

The FY17 Year in Review describes recent advances including identification of key properties for new fuels, assessment of compatibility with vehicle components and infrastructure, and expansion of research to encompass solutions for the entire on-road fleet. This research effort, led by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), is providing industry with the scientific underpinnings needed to accelerate introduction of high-performance fuels and engines that reduce energy consumption, improve air quality, and lower drivers' costs.

April 13, 2018

NREL Staff Honored for Innovative Thinking, Accomplishments

The Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) celebrated the innovative minds behind cutting-edge research at its annual Innovation and Technology Transfer Awards ceremony last month.

April 11, 2018

Heavy-Duty Emissions Research Honored with SAE Colwell Award

On April 10, authors the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Cummins Inc. received the Arch T. Colwell Merit Award during the 2018 annual Society of Automotive engineers (SAE) World Congress Awards and Recognition Ceremony in Detroit. The Colwell award recognizes the authors of papers of outstanding technical or professional merit that are presented at SAE meetings.

April 9, 2018

New Analysis Finds Synergistic Relationship Between High PV Penetration and Energy Storage Deployment

Adding higher penetrations of solar photovoltaics (PV) to the electric power grid could increase the potential for energy storage to meet peak demand, according to new analysis from the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

April 9, 2018

NREL Leadership Contributes to Revision of Key Energy Integration Standard, IEEE 1547

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has published the full revision of IEEE 1547, which establishes uniform requirements for interconnection of distributed energy resources (DERs), such as solar photovoltaics, with the electric power system. With support from the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Energy Technologies Office, NREL researchers provided leadership and technical support in developing this full revision of the standard.

March 30, 2018

Q&A with Sheila Hayter: Laying the Foundation for an Interconnected Energy Future

Sheila Hayter is a group manager in the Integrated Applications Center (IAC), leading a team of experts who support international, federal, state, and local entities with the goal of significantly reducing nonrenewable energy consumption though optimized use of energy efficiency strategies and renewable energy technologies. Along with her NREL work, she is the ASHRAE president elect. We caught up with Hayter to discuss where her roles with ASHRAE and NREL intersect.

March 27, 2018

Transportation Research Fueled by Academia

NREL's long history of successful partnerships with universities includes collaborating on transportation research projects, as well as joint appointments and sustaining a thriving host of internship programs. Over the past few years transportation researchers have collaborated with more than 20 universities within the United States and internationally.

March 27, 2018

Koenraad Beckers: A Love of Science Benefits Geothermal Research

In June, NREL researcher Koenraad Beckers will bike from Boise, Idaho, to Yellowstone National Park. The ride is typical for this avid biker. The reason though is unusual. Passionate about geothermal energy research, he wants to observe the hot water in both places.

March 22, 2018

Newly Branded Energy Systems Integration Group Joins International Institute for Energy Systems Integration

The Utility-Variable Generation Integration Group (UVIG) is broadening its reach among the ESI community, joining with the International Institute for Energy Systems Integration (iiESI), and changing its name to the Energy Systems Integration Group (ESIG).

March 21, 2018

Johney Green Joins Inaugural Board of Trustees for the UK's Faraday Institution

NREL's Johney Green, Jr. has been chosen to join Faraday's inaugural board of trustees to help set the agenda and support programs for emerging electrochemical energy storage technologies.

March 8, 2018

NREL Briefs Congressional Committee on Impact of Scientific Innovations on Transportation Future

On March 7, NREL's Laboratory Program Manager for Vehicle Technologies John Farrell briefed the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce on how the Energy Department and the national labs are driving innovation to spur advances in the efficiency and performance of fuels, vehicles, and the broader transportation system.

March 5, 2018

O, Canada: NREL Partnership Produces New Take on Alternative Fueling Station Locator Tool

Word of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) deep transportation web development expertise recently sparked interest in the United States' neighbor to the north, kicking off a collaborative international effort to launch a powerful new alternative fueling station tool on the other side of the border.

February 28, 2018

NREL Launches New Website for High-Performance Computing System Users

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Computational Science Center has launched a revamped website for users of the lab’s high-performance computing (HPC) systems at the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF).

February 28, 2018

High Performance Computing and Cutting-Edge Analysis Can Open New Scientific Realms

NREL recently created the Scientific Computing and Energy Analysis (SCEA) directorate, pairing our expertise in high performance computing with our deep knowledge of energy analysis.

February 28, 2018

Q&A with Adam Warren

Adam Warren, director of the Integrated Applications Center (IAC), discusses IAC's new role in ESI research, and the center's focus for 2018.

February 28, 2018

Unique Procurement Process Expands Microgrid Research Capabilities at the ESIF

Following a rigorous, 21-week dual-stage procurement program, NREL has purchased a Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories (SEL) microgrid controller for installation at the ESIF, enabling new research capabilities to more effectively evaluate microgrid systems and their components.

February 27, 2018

NREL-KPA-Toyota Collaboration Facilitates Permitting of Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle Repair Facilities

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Hydrogen Sensor Laboratory was used recently in a partnership with KPA Services, LLC, at the request of Toyota Motors to validate hydrogen sensors for incorporation into their system to adapt vehicle repair facilities for fuel cell electric vehicles.

February 26, 2018

Ten Years of Analyzing the Duck Chart: How an NREL Discovery in 2008 Is Helping Enable More Solar on the Grid Today

In February 2008, a team of NREL analysts led by Paul Denholm published a paper that examined how to plan for future large-scale integration of solar photovoltaic (PV) generation on the electric grid. They observed a unique change in the shape of the electric load met by conventional power plants when increasing levels of PV are added to the system, and thus identified the earliest version of what was later named the "duck curve" by the California Independent System Operator.

February 22, 2018

How Low Can Conventional Generators Go? NREL Explains Why Minimum Generation Is Key to Maximum Renewable Integration

New study in the journal Energy Policy illustrates the importance of quantifying power system operational constraints to enable more renewables on the grid.

February 21, 2018

Free Webinar February 28: Overcoming the Impacts of Fast Charging

Vehicle Electrification Group Manager Matt Keyser will be moderating a free webinar titled, "Overcoming the Impacts of Fast Charging on Hybrid/Electric Vehicles (EVs), Batteries, and Charging Systems," featuring leading industry experts from companies, including Jaguar Land Rover Automotive. Hosted by The Battery Show as part of the Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology Expo, the webinar takes place on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 7:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time (5:00 a.m. Mountain Standard Time).

February 21, 2018

IN2 Program Validates Data Center Cooling Solution

LiquidCool Solutions, a participant in the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator program, had their server-cooling technology validated at the ESIF, where it was deployed along-side NREL's supercomputer, Peregrine.

February 20, 2018

Breakthroughs Move Researchers One Step Closer to $35 Billion Fuel Savings

NREL and its partners recently revealed breakthroughs in identification of fuel blendstocks for the U.S. Department of Energy's Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines initiative. This national research effort is providing industry with the scientific underpinnings needed to accelerate introduction of high-performance fuels and engines that reduce energy consumption, improve air quality, and lower drivers' costs.

February 16, 2018

Revamped Website Features Easier Access to Travel Survey Data, Offers New Datasets

Access to detailed transportation data from travel surveys and studies conducted across the nation just got easier. The revamped Transportation Secure Data Center features a variety of updates that enhance the user experience and increase the scope of data available.

February 16, 2018

NREL's Earl Christensen Honored with Two Awards from National Biodiesel Board

Fuel stability research advances innovation and bolsters industry confidence in biodiesel.

February 8, 2018

New Wave Energy Converter Design Inspired by Wind Energy

NREL researchers took inspiration from the pitch control of wind turbine blades for a new wave energy converter design.

January 31, 2018

NREL Wind Leaders Participate in Wind Industry Partnership Summit

More than 90 people--including over 50 industry attendees, in addition to laboratory and DOE representatives--attended the Wind Industry Partnership Summit, held January 24-25 in Washington, D.C.

January 26, 2018

New Open-Source Version of FLORIS Released

NREL researchers recently released an updated open-source version of FLOw Redirection and Induction in Steady State (FLORIS), a set of controls and optimization tools for wind farm control.

January 26, 2018

NREL, Eaton Partner on Innovative Energy Solutions

On January 15, Eaton, a power management company dedicated to improving the quality of life and the environment through the use of power management technologies and services, entered into a cooperative agreement with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

January 24, 2018

Collaboration and Compromise: The Big Picture of Energy Systems Integration

Dr. Mark O'Malley offers his perspective on ESI; where it's going and what it takes to get there.

January 23, 2018

NREL Postdoc Awarded for Work on Breakthrough Solar Technology

NREL postdoc Jeff Christians received a prestigious award from the U.S. Department of Energy for his work on perovskite solar cells, a promising class of materials.

January 18, 2018

Workshop Targets Graduate Students to Advance Careers in PV

The 2018 Hands-On PV Experience workshop is an opportunity for a select group of U.S. graduate students to spend an immersive week at NREL in a hands-on, small-group research setting.

January 15, 2018

NREL Begins On-Site Validation of Drivetrain Gearbox and Bearings

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory recently installed a new gearbox and main bearing in the U.S. Department of Energy-owned General Electric 1.5-megawatt SLE turbine.

January 12, 2018

NREL to Host Ninth Annual PV Reliability Workshop

NREL will host the ninth annual PV Reliability Workshop from Feb. 27 to March 1 in Lakewood, Colorado. Sessions at the workshop will cover key topics in reliability, such as stability of high-efficiency modules, module soiling, inverter reliability, monitoring and failure detection, international standards, and accelerated testing of modules.

January 11, 2018

NREL Announces New Technology Development and Innovation Project Selections

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has selected two projects to receive U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)-funded Technology Development and Innovation (TD&I) subcontracts. These awards provide recipients access to NREL's National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) facilities and expertise in support of projects involving the research and development of early-stage wind-wildlife impact minimization technologies.

January 11, 2018

Ahmad Pesaran Honored with DOE Assistant Secretary's 2017 EERE Outstanding Impact Award

NREL's Energy Storage Chief Engineer Ahmad Pesaran has been honored with a DOE Assistant Secretary's 2017 EERE Outstanding Impact Award, along with members of the DOE EERE VTO Battery and Electrification team. Pesaran and the team received the EERE Impact Award for the successful development of the ground-breaking electric vehicle Extreme Fast Charging R&D Gap Assessment and Research Roadmap.

January 9, 2018

Fleet DNA Brings Fleet Data to Life, Informs R&D

The Fleet DNA clearinghouse of commercial vehicle operations data features over 11.5 million miles of real-world data from more than 1,700 medium- and heavy-duty vehicles operating across a variety of vocations. This massive data repository provides vehicle duty-cycle summaries and visualizations to help users understand the broad operational range of today's commercial vehicles across vocations and weight classes, enabling insight critical to the development of energy-efficient vehicle technologies that meet performance requirements and reduce operating costs.

January 4, 2018

Three-peat NREL Intern Pushes Boundaries of Early-Stage Fuels Research on Way to Master's Degree

Drew Cameron completed two Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internships and one Research Participant Program internship at NREL, culminating in her successful master's thesis in December, 2017.

January 3, 2018

Student-Designed Flume Arrives at NWTC

An NREL collaboration with the Colorado School of Mines stimulated an innovative water flume design.


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