DoE dedicating $78 million to bioenergy research funding opportunities

[USA] In an effort to bolster early-stage bioenergy research and development, the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) announced Thursday funding opportunities in four research areas totaling up to $78 million.

The DoE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office will administer the funds. Funding opportunities include up to $28 million for bioenergy engineering for product synthesis, up to $15 million efficient carbon utilization in algal systems, up to $20 million for process development for advanced biofuels and biopower, and up to $15 million for affordable and sustainable energy crops.

“The Department of Energy is focused on some of the most exciting research opportunities as well as the biggest technological challenges facing our diverse and abundant domestic bioenergy resources,” U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry said. “Through the funding opportunities announced today, U.S. bioenergy resources, including algae, energy crops, and various waste streams, will be more efficiently and effectively converted into affordable biofuels, biopower, and bioproducts.”

Bioengineering for products synthesis funding opportunities seek to develop an efficient conversion process that makes producing fuel and products from biomass and waste streams more affordable. Special consideration will be given to early-stage proposals that spark innovation in thermomechanical processing, advance new biological approaches to improve conversion efficiency, produce novel bio-based materials that perform better than conventional materials, conversion of wet organic masses, conversion of carbon dioxide, and new processes to break down lignin.

Efficient carbon utilization in algal systems funding opportunities aim to make algae-based biofuels and bioproducts more cost-competitive. Consideration will be given to research that enhances uptake and conversion of waste carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and industrial uses, or that develops new ambient air carbon capture technologies to enhance algal growth.

Process development for advanced biofuels and biopower funding opportunities seek to support early-stage research into cost-effective drop-in biofuels and processes to convert municipal solid waste and biosolids into biopower.

Affordable and sustainable energy crop funding opportunities seek to support early-stage research to make the production of non-food, dedicated crops more affordable and sustainable Small-scale field testing of new crop varieties, measurements of crop performance and environmental impact, and new cost-effective methods to plant, harvest and store biomass will be given consideration.

Letters of intent are due May 30, and full applications are due June 27.


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