Office: Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office  

FOA Number: DE-FOA-0003155 

Available Funding: Up to $10 million  

Link to Apply: Apply on EERE Exchange

Applicants must submit a Concept Paper by 5:00 p.m. ET on January 5, 2024 to be eligible to submit a Full Application.

Description

The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) issued a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) for up to $10 million of its base funding to fund Critical Materials Accelerator R&D projects. Projects funded under this FOA will prototype and mature technologies or processes to address critical material challenges in high impact areas. The Critical Materials Accelerator will be one of several pathways developed through the Critical Materials Collaborative (CMC) to de-risk innovation and mature technology development in partnership with industry. 

The recently released 2023 Critical Materials Assessment (CMA) enables DOE to set priorities for critical materials research, development, demonstration, and deployment investment. This FOA solicits proposals that continue advancing science and technology innovation and de-risking technologies that build and transform domestic critical material supply chains examined through the CMA.

The goals of this FOA are to:  

  • Foster industry partnerships to prototype and pilot technologies and processes proven at the bench scale to accelerate innovative solutions that address critical materials challenges in high impact areas; 
  • Validate the materials and manufacturing technologies that reduce demand or extend the lifetime of critical materials through performance testing and modeling; 
  • Enable informed decisions, optimize processes, and build confidence in technology scale up through life-cycle assessment and techno-economic analysis;  
  • Address the urgency to meet critical material demand with secure and sustainable critical material manufacturing technologies. 

Topic Areas 

  • Topic 1 – Use of Magnets with Reduced Critical Materials Content 
    • Topic 1a – Critical Material Lean/Free Magnets for Clean Energy Technologies: Projects will validate alternative magnet compositions that reduce or eliminate the use of critical materials by at least 25 wt.% 
    • Topic 1b – Motors and Drivetrains using Critical Material Lean/Free Magnets: Projects will prototype electric machines or drivetrains that use magnets that reduce or eliminate the use of critical materials by at least 25 wt.% 
  • Topic 2 – Improved Unit Operations of Processing and Manufacturing of Critical Materials: Projects will make improvements to unit operations and/or processes to separate, refine/process critical materials for clean energy technologies that rely on critical materials.  
  • Topic 3 – Critical Material Recovery from Scrap and Post-Consumer Products: Selectees will develop and validate approaches to recycle or recover critical materials from post-consumer products, including but not limited to, design for recycling and reuse and de-risking critical material recovery from waste and manufacturing scrap.  
  • Topic 4 – Reduced Critical Material Demand for Clean Energy Technologies: Selectees will develop and validate materials, technologies, or processes that reduce or eliminate the use of critical materials for clean energy technologies. 

Key Dates

Submission Deadline for Concept Papers:  01/05/2024 5 p.m. ET  
Submission Deadline for Full Applications:  03/22/2024 5 p.m. ET  
Expected Submission Deadline for Replies to Reviewer Comments:  04/25/2024 5 p.m. ET 
Expected Date for EERE Selection Notifications:  07/26/2024  
Expected Timeframe for Award Negotiations:  Summer-Fall 2024 

More Information  

EERE envisions awarding multiple financial assistance awards in the form of cooperative agreements. The estimated period of performance for each award will be approximately one to three years. 

To encourage the formation of a diverse range of project teams, EERE has a Teaming Partner List where interested parties can provide contact information and indicate areas of expertise and interest. Updates to the Teaming Partner List will be available on the EERE Exchange website.