Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in partnership with the National Alliance for Water Innovation (NAWI), announced a $5 million solicitation for small-scale desalination and water-reuse technologies that will improve the safety, security, and affordability of America’s water supply. 

The Pilot Program request for proposals (RFP) offers applicants the chance to design, build, operate, and test desalination and water reuse treatment systems that produce clean water from non-traditional water sources, such as brackish water, seawater, produced and extracted water, and wastewater.  

“The innovative desalination technologies funded through this initiative will help us build a modern water-management infrastructure that can treat a wider range of water resources and equitably deliver water when and where it is needed,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Kelly Speakes-Backman.  

Many domestic water sources contain high levels of salt and contaminants, a problem that can be intensified by changing precipitation patterns associated with climate change. This RFP will support projects that significantly reduce the levelized cost of water for small-scale desalination systems, helping the U.S. diversify its water supplies, improve its resilience to the effects of climate change, and move closer to net-zero carbon emissions.  

Pilot projects that support the research objectives established in the NAWI Roadmap Publication Series stand the best chance of receiving an award. NAWI will ultimately select 6-8 research teams from industry, academia and the U.S. National Laboratories, with a minimum 35% cost share required from each team. 

Concept papers are due by Wednesday, June 29, 2022. To learn more, read the full request for proposals

NAWI is a public-private partnership that brings together a world-class team of industry and academic partners to examine the critical technical barriers and research needed to radically lower the cost and energy of desalination. NAWI is led by DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in collaboration with National Energy Technology LaboratoryNational Renewable Energy Laboratory, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and is funded by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office.