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February 12, 2016
Energy Department Requests Information on Biofuels & Bioproducts Process Pilot Verification Capabilities

The U.S. Department of Energy is seeking input from industry, academia, national laboratories, and other biofuels and bioproducts stakeholders to identify existing pilot- or process development-scale facilities with the capability to perform process verifications for biomass conversion pathways to biofuels, bioproducts, or intermediates that integrate multiple unit operations on a scale of approximately 0.5 or greater tons of dry biomass input per day.

February 11, 2016
NREL Refinery Process Shows Increased Effectiveness of Producing Ethanol from Algae

A new biorefinery process developed by scientists at the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) has proven to be significantly more effective at producing ethanol from algae than previous methods.

February 8, 2016
Energy Department Announces $11.3 Million Available for Mega-Bio: Bioproducts to Enable Biofuels

The Energy Department today announced up to $11.3 million in funding to develop flexible biomass-to-hydrocarbon biofuels conversion pathways that can be modified to produce advanced fuels and/or products based on external factors, such as market demand. These pathways could consist of a route to a platform chemical that could be converted to products or renewable hydrocarbon fuels or a route that co-produces chemicals and renewable hydrocarbon fuels.

February 4, 2016
BETO Director Ranks #6 in Biofuels Digest’s Top 100 People in the Advanced Bioeconomy

Biofuels Digest has released its 2016 ranking of the “Top 100 People in the Advanced Bioeconomy,” and Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) Director Dr. Jonathan Male is ranked high in the list at number six. Sharing this prestigious spot with Dr. Male are other top players from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)— Assistant Secretary for EERE, David Danielson and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Transportation, Reuben Sarkar.

January 27, 2016
BETO’s sustainability work includes assessing water resource use and water quality impacts of bioenergy production.
BETO-Funded Study Offers Methods to Support a Water-Sustainable Bioenergy Industry

Argonne National Laboratory released a study funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) that examines the potential effects of future biofuel production on freshwater resources in the Missouri River Basin—a region that could play a central role in the production of cellulosic biomass like switchgrass, a perennial energy crop

January 15, 2016
Energy Department Announces $15 Million for Advancements in Algal Biomass Yield, Phase 2 (ABY2)

The Energy Department today announced up to $15 million in funding to develop technologies that are likely to succeed in producing 3,700 gallons of algal biofuel intermediate (or equivalent dry weight basis) per acre per year (gal/acre/yr) on an annualized average basis (not peak or projected) through multiple batch campaigns or on a semi-continuous or continuous basis, in an outdoor test environment by 2020.

December 22, 2015
BETO Announces Notice of Intent (NOI) to Develop Pathways to Biofuels and Bioproducts

The Energy Department announces its intent to issue, on behalf of the Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) entitled “MEGA-BIO: Bioproducts to Enable Biofuels.” This FOA supports BETO’s goal of meeting its 2022 cost target of $3/gallon gasoline equivalent for the production of hydrocarbon fuels from lignocellulosic biomass.

December 17, 2015
BETO Seeks Stakeholder Input on the Co-Optimization of Fuels and Engines

The U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) and Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) have released a request for information (RFI) titled “Co-Optimization of Fuels and Engines” (Optima). BETO and VTO are seeking input from industry, academia, and other stakeholders on the Optima initiative, which is focused on the development of new fuels and engine architectures that are co-optimized—designed in tandem to maximize performance and carbon efficiency.

December 16, 2015
Dr. Chaitanya Narula led analysis of an Oak Ride National Laboratory biofuel-to-hydrocarbon conversion technology to explain the underlying process. Photo courtesy Oak Ride National Laboratory.
Ethanol-to-Hydrocarbon Technology Moves Closer to Commercialization

Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s method to directly convert biomass-derived ethanol to a hydrocarbon blendstock was published in Scientific Reports and is now on its next step to commercialization with Vertimass, LLC. The Energy Department’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) provided funding for the Oak Ridge research (beginning in 2011). Vertimass was awarded $2 million in BETO funding in 2014 to commercialize the project; the company has now successfully completed its technology validation, which allows it to move on to commercialization.

December 14, 2015
Notice of Intent (NOI) to Issue Funding Opportunity for Advancements in Algal Biomass Yield, Phase 2

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announces its intent to issue, on behalf of the Bioenergy Technologies Office, a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) entitled “Advancements in Algal Biomass Yield, Phase 2 (ABY2).”

November 23, 2015
Bioenergy News
GREET Model Expanded to Better Address Biofuel Life-Cycle Analysis Research Questions

The Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) model allows researchers and analysts to fully evaluate the energy and emission impacts of advanced vehicle technologies and new transportation fuels. Argonne National Laboratory recently released a new version of GREET, funded in part by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office.

November 19, 2015
NREL researcher Dr. Jianping Yu holds a sample of cyanobacteria. Photo courtesy Dennis Schroeder/NREL.
BETO-Funded Projects Win at the 2015 R&D 100 Awards

Two projects funded by the Energy Department’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) have received awards at this year’s 2015 R&D 100 Awards. The annual “Oscars of Invention” awards recognize excellence in innovative technologies; BETO projects have had strong showings as finalists and winners in the past, and this year was no exception.

November 13, 2015
DOE Announces Webinars on the Mid-Atlantic Baseline Study, EPA’s Clean Power Plan and More

EERE offers webinars to the public on a range of subjects, from adopting the latest energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies, to training for the clean energy workforce.  Webinars are free; however, advanced registration is typically required. You can also watch archived webinars and browse previously aired videos, slides, and transcripts.

Upcoming Webinars

November 17:  Live Webinar on the Mid-Atlantic Baseline Study 

Webinar Sponsor: Wind and Water Technology Office 

November 3, 2015
Bioenergy News
New Report Outlines Potential of Future Water Resource Recovery Facilities

A new report from a workshop held jointly by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the National Science Foundation (NSF) outlines a range of research and actions needed to transform today’s water treatment plants into water resource recovery facilities.

October 26, 2015
The DuPont cellulosic ethanol facility in Nevada, Iowa, will produce about 30 million gallons of cellulosic ethanol per year.  Photo courtesy of DuPont.
Largest Cellulosic Ethanol Plant in the World Opens October 30

The DuPont cellulosic ethanol facility, opening in Nevada, Iowa, on October 30, will be the largest cellulosic ethanol plant in the world. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) Director, Jonathan Male, alongside senior government officials, DuPont leaders and staff, and local farmers will attend the grand opening ceremony and plant tour.

October 19, 2015
Pilot Plant Completes Two 1,000-Hour Ethanol Performance Runs

ICM Inc. announced successful completion of two 1,000-hour performance runs of its patent-pending Generation 2.0 Co-Located Cellulosic Ethanol process at its cellulosic ethanol pilot plant in St. Joseph, Missouri. This is an important step toward the commercialization of cellulosic ethanol from switchgrass and energy sorghum.

October 13, 2015
BETO Project Improves Production of Renewable Chemical from Cellulosic Feedstocks

Renewable chemical company Genomatica made significant progress toward increasing the range of feedstocks that can be used to commercially produce high-quality bio-based chemicals, in a project funded by the Energy Department’s Bioenergy Technologies Office.

October 5, 2015
Ryan Davis and Sandia National Laboratories colleagues have developed a method to recycle critical and costly algae cultivation nutrients phosphate and nitrogen. Photo by Dino Vournas.
Sandia Algae Researchers Cut Costs with Improved Nutrient Recycling

Algae are a promising source of renewable biofuels and bioproducts, and researchers at Sandia National Laboratories in Livermore, California, are taking a step toward realizing the promise of sustainable, cost-effective algal biofuels for the American public.

October 2, 2015
Algenol: Using Algae to Make Fuels
Algenol Announces Commercial Algal Ethanol Fuel Partnership

U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) partner Algenol signed an agreement with Protec Fuel to market and distribute commercial ethanol produced from algae for fleets and retail consumption from Algenol’s commercial demonstration module in Fort Myers, Florida. Algenol expects that the first two gas stations offering the fuel will open next year in Tampa and Orlando. The companies will distribute both E15 and E85 blends of ethanol that Algenol will produce at its future full-scale commercial plant upon completion in 2017.

October 2, 2015
Workforce development and education 2015 Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internships spring interns and mentors at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
The Algae Foundation Announces New DOE Funded Education Initiative to Enhance Algae Workforce Development

The Algae Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to expanding the algae industry through research, education, and outreach, announced plans at the 2015 Algae Biomass Organization Summit to develop an innovative formal degree program. The Department of Energy funded initiative seeks to strengthen workforce capabilities for commercial-scale algae production by developing a degree in algal cultivation technologies.

September 3, 2015
BETO Seeks Stakeholder Input on Achieving High Yields from Algal Feedstocks

The U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) has released a Request for Information (RFI) titled “High Yields through Productivity and Integration Research.” BETO is seeking input from industry, academia, and other stakeholders regarding supply systems and services for the cultivation, logistics, and preprocessing of algal feedstocks.

August 27, 2015
Energy Department Awards up to $4 Million to Develop Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts

The Energy Department today announced two additional projects selected to receive up to $4 million to develop next-generation biofuels that will help reduce the cost of producing gasoline, diesel, and jet fuels from biomass.

August 26, 2015
Energy Department Announces $10 Million for Innovative Technologies for Bioenergy Technologies Incubator 2 Funding Opportunity Announcement

The Energy Department today announced up to $10 million in funding to advance the production of advanced biofuels, substitutes for petroleum-based feedstocks and bioproducts made from renewable, non-food-based biomass, such as algae, agricultural residues, and woody biomass. This work supports the Energy Department’s efforts to make drop-in biofuels more accessible and affordable, as well as to meet the cost target equivalent of $3 per gallon of gasoline by 2022.

August 21, 2015
Energy Department Announces $9 Million to Improve Sustainability of Cellulosic Bioenergy Systems

The Energy Department today announced up to $9 million for the design of sustainable bioenergy systems that maintain or enhance the environmental and socio-economic sustainability of cellulosic bioenergy through the improvement of feedstock production, logistics systems, and technology development.

August 13, 2015
Cyanobacteria cultures. Photo by Dennis Schroeder/NREL.
BETO-Funded Algae Project at NREL Named a Finalist for 2015 R&D 100 Awards

The R&D 100 Awards, presented annually by R&D Magazine, recognize 100 of the most innovative technologies and services of the year across nine categories and are selected by an independent panel of more than 70 judges. In July, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s (NREL’s) cyanobacterial bioethylene project was announced as a finalist in the mechanical devices/materials category for the 2015 awards. This project is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office.