The US Department of Energy will release later this month a three-year, $52.5-million solicitation to support research to assist in overcoming the scientific challenges associated with the production, use and storage of hydrogen. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman announced the solicitation while addressing the 2006 SAE World Congress.
Areas supported will include novel materials for hydrogen storage, membranes for hydrogen purification and fuel-cell operation and for nanoscale catalysts for hydrogen production and fuel-cell electrochemical reactions.
Over the years, engineers have been the real heroes of many of our nation’s biggest environmental gains. Policy makers in Washington, environmental groups and lawyers may grab the headlines, but you are the people who actually get things done. You have given us catalytic converters, displacement-on-demand, hybrid vehicles and now, flex-fuel vehicles.
Now, we are counting on you to deliver some more of that magic that really comes from outside the box thinking and lots of hard work to make hydrogen power a reality.—Secretary Bodman
In his speech, Secretary Bodman also emphasized the near-term importance of E85 flex-fuel vehicles, plug-in hybrids and clean-diesel technology. The DOE will issue another solicitation later in April for proposals on forming public-private teams and other affiliations to make E85 more widely available in the marketplace.
As a part of the President’s Advanced Energy Initiative, our Department is seeking $6.7 million in additional funding next year to support research on batteries and related systems that could be used in plug-in applications and could extend the range these vehicles can travel on electric power alone. We want to continue to work with the industry in this arena and we hope to see manufacturers continue to expand their product offerings.—Secretary Bodman
Bodman speech to Society of Automotive Engineers World Congress