WVU is a member of the US DOE's University Coalition for Fossil Energy Research (UCFER), a program supported under its Office of Fossil Energy and managed by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). UCFER was established by NETL in 2015 after a national competition to select a group of leading universities with shared interests in fossil energy research that would work collaboratively with in-house researchers at NETL’s field laboratories.
The objectives of the UCFER program are to:
- Advance basic and applied energy research for
more efficient and more environmentally-friendly production and utilization of
coal, natural gas, and oil, including carbon (CO2) management.
- Promote multidisciplinary collaboration among the member universities of the Coalition and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL).
The headquarters for UCFER is at Penn State University (http://www.energy.psu.edu/ucfer/). There are currently 15 members of the Coalition. Its collaborative research focuses on coal, natural gas, and oil in five core competency areas under which the NETL in-house research programs are organized:
- Geological and Environmental
Systems, consisting of research on geomaterials, fluid flow in geologic media,
and geospatial and strategic field monitoring.
- Materials Engineering and
Manufacturing, consisting of research on the design, development, and
deployment of advanced functional and structural materials for use in extreme
- Energy Conversion Engineering,
consisting of the evaluation, integration, control and performance modeling of
processes and components for developing innovative energy conversion processes
and transformational technologies.
- Systems Engineering and Analysis,
consisting of analysis and design of advanced energy systems such as power
plants, energy markets, and energy-environment interactions.
- Computational Science and Engineering, consisting of research involving high-performance computing and data analytics that enable the generation of information and insights through the integration of experimental data and engineering analyses.
On a periodic basis, UCFER releases requests for proposals which focus on selected research topics in the five NETL competency areas. The topical theme research areas for each solicitation are determined by NETL research managers. One of the conditions for receiving an award is that the UCFER team member must work collaboratively with a research staff member at NETL during the period of performance of the award.
WVU has a long history of working collaboratively with NETL staff in its three major laboratories in Morgantown, WV, Pittsburgh, PA, and Albany, OR. The University values its relationship with NETL and has developed strong connections with NETL researchers in the laboratories cited. The Energy Institute encourages participation by WVU researchers in the UCFER program.
WVU is represented in the UCFER governing structure by membership on the Technology Advisory Council (TAC) and the Core Competency Advisory Board (CCAB). For additional information about UCFER programs, please contact Richard Bajura, the Technical Advisory Council representative, or the UCFER headquarters web site referenced above.
Contact Richard Bajura for more information.