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Research, Development, and Demonstration

The Bioenergy Technologies Office’s research, development, and demonstration efforts are organized around three key technical and three key crosscutting elements. The first two technical elements—Feedstock Supply and Logistics R&D and Conversion R&D—primarily focus on research and development (R&D). The third technical element—Demonstration and Market Transformation—focuses on integrated biorefineries and distribution infrastructure. The crosscutting elements—Sustainability, Strategic Analysis, and Strategic Communications—focus on addressing barriers that could impede adoption of bioenergy technologies. This work organization allows the Office to allocate resources for pre-commercial technology development, as well as for demonstration of technologies across the biomass-to-bioenergy and bioproducts supply chain.

Research & Development

The R&D activities sponsored by the Office are focused on addressing technical barriers, providing engineering solutions, and developing the scientific and engineering underpinnings of emerging biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower industries. Near- to mid-term R&D is focused on moving current feedstock and conversion technologies from concept to bench to pilot scale. The goal of longer-term-focused R&D is to accelerate implementation of the technologies by developing deeper knowledge of terrestrial and algal biomass, feedstock supply systems, biological systems, and biochemical and thermochemical conversion processes. This knowledge can ultimately be used to develop new or improved technologies that increase available low-cost biomass supplies, improve conversion efficiency, and reduce conversion cost while reducing carbon dioxide equivalent emissions and water use. Office-funded R&D is performed by national laboratories, industry, and universities. To learn more about some of the Office's R&D activities, visit the Feedstocks, Algal Biofuels,  and Conversion pages.

Demonstration and Market Transformation

The Office’s Demonstration and Market Transformation technology area focuses on validating integrated biorefinery applications at increasing engineering scale and on biofuel distribution infrastructure and end use. The goal is to develop emerging conversion technologies beyond bench scale to pre-commercial demonstration scale, which can reduce the technical risk at increasing complexities and increasing scales, and which can culminate in the construction of pioneer biofuel production plants by industry. The second goal of demonstration and market transformation is to develop the supporting infrastructure needed to enable a fully developed, operational, and sustainable biomass-to-bioenergy value chain in the United States. To learn more about some of the Office's R&D activities, visit the Integrated Biorefineries, Biofuels Distribution Infrastructure and End Use, and Biopower pages.

Crosscutting Activities

The Office’s crosscutting efforts focus on addressing barriers that could impede adoption of bioenergy technologies. This work organization allows the Office to allocate resources for pre-commercial technology development, as well as for demonstration of technologies across the biomass-to-bioenergy and bioproducts supply chain. To learn more about the Office’s Crosscutting activities, visit the Sustainability and Strategic Analysis pages.