DOE awards nearly $6.2M for eight university-run hydrogen gas turbine R&D projects

Published on May 14, 2021 by Chris Galford

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A total of eight university-led projects will benefit from nearly $6.2 million in federal funding announced by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) this week in the hopes of advancing hydrogen gas turbines for use in electricity generation.

Specifically, the University Turbines Systems Research (USTR) program funding will benefit research and development efforts that seek to turn the clean-burning fuel into a high-performing, efficient gas for power. Its usefulness requires greater reliability, efficiency, and performance, though the DOE is hopeful it will aid the Biden administration’s 100 percent clean electricity goal, set for 2035. As such, universities will address issues of applied engineering, seeking to enhance these turbines when powered with pure hydrogen, hydrogen, natural gas mixtures, and other carbon-free hydrogen-containing fuels.

“Our economic competitors are getting serious about harnessing carbon emissions free power from hydrogen, and so the U.S. must as well,” Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm said. “Congress has entrusted DOE as the nation’s leading funder of the physical sciences, and we’re proud to invest in the brilliant scientific minds in our nation’s university system that are helping us ensure every American can access reliable zero-carbon power.”

Each of the university projects involved will receive approximately $800,000, except for San Diego State University, which will receive $600,000. Other recipients include Georgia Tech, the University of Central Florida, Ohio State University, the University of California — Irvine, the University of Alabama, and Purdue University, which received two awards.