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The EERE Blog includes updates to current Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) projects, interviews with energy experts, and success stories about EERE’s technology offices and national laboratories. Subscribe to the blog email list.

June 30, 2016
First-Ever Sustainable Transportation Summit to Talk Future of Transportation, Energy, and Mobility

The inaugural 2016 Sustainable Transportation Summit will serve as a forum to share ideas and perspectives on opportunities to accelerate the commercialization and deployment of advanced transportation technologies and smart mobility systems over the next decade.

June 29, 2016
Pictured above is a test section of Brayton Energy’s newly designed solar receiver | Photo courtesy of Brayton Energy
EERE Success Story—Solar Receiver Redesign Enables CSP to Beam Ahead

Next generation concentrating solar power (CSP) system designs use supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) turbine power cycles to more efficiently convert solar thermal energy to electricity and to reduce the cost of CSP technology. Because sCO2 power cycles work best at very high temperatures and under intense pressure, a CSP system needs receivers and heat exchangers that can withstand these conditions.

June 29, 2016
Wanda Forrest, Coordinator of the Northern Florida Clean Fuels Coalition in Jacksonville, and Mike Scarpino, of Clean Cities, standing next to a compressed natural gas vehicle. | Photo courtesy of Clean Cities
Clean Cities Welcomes New North Florida Coalition

The Energy Department’s Clean Cities program has welcomed the Northern Florida Clean Fuels Coalition in Jacksonville into its network of nearly 100 coalitions across the country. As part of Clean Cities, this group will continue to minimize the use of petroleum in transportation throughout their area.

June 28, 2016
The Grid Engineering for Accelerated Renewable Energy Deployment program, also known as GEARED, is a training and education framework that prepares current and future utility-sector professionals to operate the electric grid with increasingly higher levels of solar electricity.
Preparing Students for Our Nation’s Changing Energy Portfolio

The utility sector is going through a rapid transformation as more renewables come online and more Americans choose to go solar. Adding large quantities of distributed energy onto the grid requires the workforce to acquire new knowledge and skills, which SunShot is enabling through its GEARED program.

June 27, 2016
The just-released 2016 National Algal Biofuels Technology Review captures the exciting achievements of the field of algal biofuels, as well as articulates new challenges, lessons learned, and critical next steps. | Photo courtesy of Sapphire, Las Cruces
Release of the 2016 National Algal Biofuels Technology Review Charts Path Forward for Algae

The 2016 National Algal Biofuels Technology Review, which was just released today, captures the exciting achievements of the field of algal biofuels, as well as articulates new challenges, lessons learned, and critical next steps.

June 27, 2016
Heavy-duty trucks are getting more efficient thanks to the Energy Department's SuperTruck initiative.
SuperTruck Leading the Way for Efficiency in Heavy-Duty, Long-Haul Vehicles

Nearly all Americans rely on heavy-duty, long-haul trucks that haul our goods and services, deliver our food, and help keep our economy humming along. Thanks to the Energy Department's widely successful SuperTruck Initiative, these vehicles are becoming more fuel-efficient, which saves money spent on gas and reduces harmful carbon emissions.

June 23, 2016
Heila Technologies, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, won the 2016 Cleantech UP National Competition. | Energy Department photo.
Cleantech University Prize Highlights Next Generation of Clean Energy Innovators

Energy Department competition supports student entrepreneurs and helps spur development of new clean energy technologies.

June 23, 2016
President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India talk after a working lunch in the Cabinet Room of the White House, June 7, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Mapping Solar Potential in India

When President Obama and Indian Prime Minister Modi met earlier this month, they pledged to show global leadership in the fight against climate change and reaffirmed their commitment to collaboratively support India’s ambitious goal to deploy 175 gigawatts of renewable energy, including 100 gigawatts of solar, by 2022.

June 23, 2016
Plasma oxidation oven. Photo Courtesy: RMX Technologies
EERE Success Story—Plasma Oxidation of Carbon Fiber Precursor

With the potential to reduce the weight of vehicle components by up to 60%, carbon fiber composites is one of the most promising lightweight materials available to improve vehicle efficiency. However, its current inputs and manufacturing processes are expensive, severely limiting its use in most high-volume vehicle models.

June 21, 2016
A series of seven public stakeholder meetings was recently held throughout the United States to gather public comments. Submit your comment by July 1.
Submit Your Comments for the Quadrennial Energy Review by July 1

The Quadrennial Energy Review (QER) is an assessment of the changing energy landscape in the United States. Play your role in helping America meet its objectives of reliable, affordable, and clean energy by submitting your comments to the QER's latest installment by July 1.

June 20, 2016
Improving Manufacturing through Technology and Innovation

Latest institute can help manufacturers better design, measure, predict and control all aspects of the manufacturing process.

June 20, 2016
NovoMoto, winner of the Clean Energy Trust Challenge, has developed a MicroPlant technology that aims to provide renewable, sustainable electricity to communities in sub-Saharan Africa. | Photo courtesy of NovoMoto
Road to Denver: Collegiate Startups Compete for $100,000 at Cleantech University Prize National Competition

The Cleantech University Prize Collegiate Competition has traveled coast-to-coast over the past four months to find America’s next clean energy entrepreneurs. Meet the teams that will compete for $100,000 in prizes at the National Competition this week in Denver.

June 17, 2016
Energy Department Launches Crowdsourcing Community to Bring More Innovators into the Mix

The Energy Department is piloting a new crowdsourcing community where any American citizen can submit their innovative ideas for improving building efficiency.

June 16, 2016
This array on the roof of Eastern Mennonite University’s library sets the stage for the school to add even more solar through Solar Market Pathways.
Sun-Powered Schools: Helping Universities Go Solar

Dormitory mini fridges, dishwashers in dining halls, and campus computer labs are just a few of the things that can create large utility bills for colleges and universities across the country. The SunShot Initiative is working to make it easier for college campuses to use solar energy to help ease the financial burden of around-the-clock operation.

June 16, 2016
The RRG-9 ST-1 wellhead fitted with a lubricator. A distributed temperature sensor was run through the lubricator to measure well bore temperatures.
EERE Success Story—Geothermal Technology Breakthrough in Idaho: Building Upon Previous EGS Accomplishments

The Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO)'s major long-term goal is to realize enhanced geothermal system (EGS) technologies’ vast potential through commercial, cost-competitive, EGS power production. In pursuit of this goal, GTO funds research and development (R&D) and field demonstrations to facilitate new, innovative technology deployment and validation to reduce costs and improve performance of these man-made geothermal reservoirs.

June 15, 2016
Dr. Mark Johnson (left), Director of the Energy Department’s Advanced Manufacturing Office, moderates a panel on shared infrastructure and innovation ecosystems.
Celebrating Clean Energy Manufacturing in the Big Apple

American manufacturing is primed for a comeback thanks in part to President Obama’s vision and a sweeping initiative led by the Energy Department - the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative - to spur new alliances, investments and innovation in clean energy technologies.

June 14, 2016
VIDEO: How to Build a Wind Turbine in less than 20 Minutes

The U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's Wind and Water Power Technologies Office provides a simple step-by-step project on building a wind turbine in less than 20 minutes.

June 13, 2016
The Lifeworks installation by Austin Energy, a SHINES awardee. | Photo courtesy of Austin Energy
Meet Guohui Yuan: SunShot Welcomes Big-Picture Thinker to New Solar Role

The SunShot Initiative’s new systems integration program manager, Dr. Guohui Yuan, maintains a steadfast commitment to add more solar energy onto the nation’s electrical grid while always striving to achieve the office’s broader goals. “Because of my physics background I always look at problems at the system level — not just the issue, but the big picture,” he says.

June 10, 2016
Hosts of the Cleantech University Prize (Cleantech Up) FLoW competition with the winners, Xstream Trucking of Stanford University. The team took home the $50,000 first-place prize for their drag-reducing trucking technology. | Photo courtesy of Caltech
Cleantech University Prize Regional Competitions Wrap Up in Florida and California

The Energy Department’s Cleantech University Prize recently wrapped up its regional collegiate competitions. The California Institute of Technology and the University of Central Florida (UCF) each hosted student-led startup teams as part of the entrepreneurial clean energy contest.

June 8, 2016
Energy crops planted for use at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The Energy Department hosted a five-day Bioenergy Study Tour of the southeastern United States to highlight innovations that are bringing the region one step closer to a sustainable bioenergy industry.| Photos courtesy of DOE
Take a Tour of the Bioenergy Ecosystem in the Southeastern U.S.

The Energy Department's Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) works to enable a sustainable bioenergy industry that protects natural resources and advances environmental, economic, and social benefits. BETO recently sponsored a five-day Bioenergy Study Tour of the southeastern United States to highlight innovations that are bringing the industry one step closer to these goals.

June 8, 2016
A hydrogen fueling station in San Francisco. | Photo courtesy of the California Fuel Cell Partnership
A Closer Look at Hydrogen Refueling

What’s the difference between a hydrogen refueling dispenser and a traditional gasoline dispenser that you see at your local gas station? Not that much, actually. A hydrogen refueling dispenser is used to power a fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV). But instead of using a combustible gas-powered engine, a FCEV carries a fuel cell onboard that uses hydrogen to power an electric motor which makes the car run.

June 7, 2016
QM Power discusses the company's new refrigeration motor with a supermarket. (Source: QM Power)
EERE Success Story—Revolutionary Refrigeration Motor Slashes Supermarket Energy Usage

Thanks to a DOE Building Technologies Office funding award, QM Power is demonstrating its technology, called the Q-Sync fan motor, in supermarkets across the country, with DOE and utilities verifying the savings. Customers are now using these successful demonstrations to accept and commercialize the Q-Sync fan in their refrigeration units.

June 7, 2016
As the electric grid becomes smarter, it also becomes more vulnerable to hackers. | Creative Commons.
To Protect the Grid from Hackers, You Need to Break It

With a growing risk of cyber attacks from hackers, researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory built a test bed to experiment with cybersecurity tools for the nation’s electric grid.

June 7, 2016
The geothermal facility in the Williston Basin in North Dakota. | Photo by Kirby Baier of Continental Resources
Energy Department Receives Award for First-of-its-Kind Geothermal Project

The Department of Energy and the University of North Dakota have been recognized by the Geothermal Energy Association for launching the first commercial project that produces geothermal power from an oil and gas well.

June 6, 2016
Installing a concentrating solar power system in Gila Bend, Arizona. The curved  mirrors are tilted toward the sun, focusing sunlight on tubes that run the length of the mirrors. The reflected sunlight heats a fluid flowing through the tubes. The hot fluid then is used to boil water in a conventional steam-turbine generator to produce electricity. | Photo by Dennis Schroeder.
Top 6 Things You Didn't Know About Solar Energy

Counting down our list of top things you didn't know about solar energy -- read on for more on the most abundant energy resource known to mankind.