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DOE VTO announces $45.8M FY 2024 research & development funding opportunity

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $45.8 million in new funding for projects that will advance research, development, demonstration, and deployment (RDD&D) critical to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector. (DE-FOA-0003248)

The funding is through DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Topic areas in the Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 R&D funding opportunity include:

  • Next-generation phosphate-based cathodes.
  • Advancing the state of the art for sodium-ion batteries.
  • Developing concepts for decreasing greenhouse gas emissions from off-road vehicles such as construction, agriculture, mining, and forestry vehicles.
  • Developing and deploying vehicle-to-everything technologies that can lead to meaningful savings at the vehicle and transportation system level.
  • Developing high-performance, domestically produced electrical steels (E-steels) for use in electrified powertrains.
  • Addressing critical cybersecurity needs for smart and secure electric vehicle charging.
Topic/Subtopic TitleAnticipated Number of AwardsTotal Federal Funding Available for All Awards
1 - Next-Generation Phosphate-Based Cathodes4-5$15,000,000
2 - Na-ion Battery Seedling Projects for Electric Vehicle Applications4-6$6,000,000
3 - Low-GHG Concepts for Off-Road Vehicles2-3$3,500,000
4 - Saving Energy with Connectivity2-4$6,300,000
5 –Domestically Produced E-steels1-3$5,000,000
6 – Cybersecurity for Smart and Secure Electric Vehicle Charging2-4$10,000,000

Topic Area 1: Next-Generation Phosphate-Based Cathodes

This topic area targets the development of phosphate-based cathode materials that surpass the performance of state-of-the-art lithium iron phosphate (LFP) cathode materials, which are currently gaining traction as an alternative low-cost solution. The primary objective of this area of interest is to develop high energy density battery cells containing phosphate-based cathodes at the material and cell level.

Topic Area 2: Na-ion Battery Seedling Projects for Electric Vehicle Applications

While shifting to alternative cathode materials such as LFP can alleviate the impact of nickel and cobalt, the impact of lithium has not been adequately addressed. One alternative to lithium is sodium (Na). While there is much promise for Na-ion chemistries, key issues still limit their adoption. This objective of this topic area is to advance the state of the art for Na-ion batteries by solving key challenges for the cathode, anode, or electrolyte through the development of 1 Ah full cells utilizing cell chemistries that are significant advancements over current industry state-of-the-art Na-ion technology.

Topic Area 3: Low-GHG Concepts for Off-Road Vehicles

The objective of this topic area is to develop and validate technology concepts capable of significantly decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, energy use, harmful criteria emissions, and total cost of ownership across the entire off-road vehicle sector, including construction, agriculture, mining, forestry, ports, warehouses, etc. Concepts must demonstrate they can meet the unique requirements for off-road vehicles and gain customer acceptance.

Topic Area 4: Saving Energy with Connectivity

Research has shown that vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications can lead to meaningful energy savings at the vehicle and transportation system level by integrating interoperable vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V), vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I), and vehicle-to-pedestrian (V2P) communications. The objective of this topic area is to develop and deploy V2X technologies with a focus on the efficiency and convenience of the mobility ecosystem, while reducing transportation’s environmental impacts. Examples could include but are not limited to eco-driving along connected corridors, transit or freight priority, integrated corridor management, or passenger or freight trip-chaining optimization.

Topic Area 5: Domestically Produced Electrical Steels (E-Steels)

The US transportation sector is in a technology revolution where light-duty vehicles are rapidly transitioning from internal combustion engines to electrified powertrains. Although most of the vehicles are produced in the US, many of the powertrain components rely on imports and foreign supply chains. Of particular interest are traction motors and their components. The objective of this topic are is to develop E-Steels meeting properties including frequency, thickness, ductility, cost, and manufacturability.

Topic Area 6: Cybersecurity for Smart and Secure Electric Vehicle Charging

This topic area is addressing critical cybersecurity needs to address through two subtopics:

  • Subtopic 6.a: Enabling Wide-scale, Cybersecure EV/EVSE Aggregation for Grid Services: To support the integration of electric vehicles (EVs) and their charging requirements with the electric grid, both government and the private sector have made significant investments in the development of smart charge management (SCM) systems and technologies for EV charging infrastructure. The objective of this subtopic area is to research, develop, and demonstrate systems, technologies, and tools necessary for the cybersecure aggregation of EVs and charging infrastructure to provide widescale, cybersecure grid services.
  • Subtopic 6.b: Tools to Assess EV/EVSE/Charging System Cybersecurity Posture and Compliance with Standards and Protocols for Communications, Controls, and Monitoring: Testing and evaluation of Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) by DOE national laboratories has clearly indicated a lack of compliance by many vendors with certified and/or regulated EV charging standards and protocols. In addition to creating cybersecurity vulnerabilities, this non-compliance greatly inhibits interoperability, supplier-managed SCM, and right-to-repair. The objective of this subtopic is to research, develop, and validate a suite of tools and associated procedures to comprehensively assess EV/EVSE/charging system compliance with relevant standards and protocols and cybersecurity posture.


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