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US DOE to invest $300 million in sustainable transportation R&D

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The US Department of Energy (DOE) will invest nearly $300 million into the research and development of sustainable transportation resources and technologies.

At the Washington Auto Show, Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes announced the investment will be split between three separate funding opportunity announcements (FOAs), supporting the DOE’s goal of ensuring that as the transport sector transforms, consumers have access to affordable, clean and efficient energy options.

Each FOA contains multiple topics to support the DOE’s goal of providing consumers and businesses with a range of technologies and fuel types. Funded through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), the three FOAs will be issued on behalf of three transport offices: Vehicle, Fuel Cells, and Bioenergy Technology Offices.

  • FY20 Vehicles Technologies Office (VTO) Multi-Topic FOA ($133 million [€120 million]) – Topic areas within this FOA address priorities in advanced batteries and electrification, advanced engine and fuel technologies, including technologies for off-road applications, lightweight materials, new mobility technologies (energy-efficient mobility systems), and alternative fuels technology demonstrations.

  • H2@Scale New Markets FOA ($64 million [€8 million]) – Topic areas within this FOA advance DOE’s H2@Scale initiative. This investment will support innovative hydrogen concepts to encourage market expansion and boost the scale of hydrogen production, storage, transport, and use, including HGVs, data centres and steel production.

  • FY20 Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) Multi-Topic FOA ($100 [€3 million]) – Topic areas within this FOA support the US bioeconomy by reducing the price of drop-in biofuels, lowering the cost of biopower, and enabling high-value products from biomass or waste resources.


“As we enter a new decade, DOE remains diligent in addressing the various challenges and opportunities associated with the dramatic changes occurring within our transportation sector,” said Under Secretary Menezes.

“Under this announcement, DOE is focusing our efforts on three areas of transportation to further spur innovative breakthroughs in this sector. The Trump Administration is committed to providing new energy and efficiency opportunities for manufacturers and consumers that will continue growing this ever-changing market.”

Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Daniel R Simmons, said: “As technologies, business models, and consumer demands evolve, our diverse supply of fuels and technologies allows us to approach the future of sustainable transportation from all angles, consistent with our comprehensive energy strategy. The products that result from this FOA will significantly impact the sustainable energy market for the better.”