Research Highlights

Research Highlights

Energy Storage Thumbnail

Advancing Energy Storage Solutions

Oak Ridge National Laboratory translates scientific discoveries into energy storage solutions that boost energy efficiency, increase energy security, and create economic opportunity for the nation.  
CF Fender

ORNL develops textile-based carbon fiber for automotive fenders

ORNL, partnering with IACMI (The Composites Institute), has successfully produced carbon fiber injection molded automotive fenders using TCF (textile-based carbon fiber). The novel, low-cost fiber includes PAN precursor and was first developed at the Department of Energy’s Carbon Fiber...
Wireless Coil

ORNL demonstrates 120-kilowatt wireless charging for vehicles

Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have demonstrated a 120-kilowatt wireless charging system for vehicles—providing six times the power of previous ORNL technology and a big step toward charging times that rival the speed and convenience of a gas...
Kaushik Biswas

Making self-healing building materials a reality: Kaushik Biswas

Inspiration often strikes in the unlikeliest of places and for Kaushik Biswas, a mechanical engineer in ORNL’s Building Envelope & Urban Systems Research Group, a moment spent enjoying entertainment led to the idea of developing self-healing vacuum panels for buildings. “I was...
Buildings-Inside_out.jpg

Vacuum Insulation Improves Building Energy Performance

September 4, 2018 - Vacuum insulation technology called modified atmosphere insulation, or MAI, could be a viable solution for improving the energy performance of buildings, based on a study by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and industry partners. ORNL researchers used a specialized...
SmartTruck, a small business in Greenville, SC, recently completed its first detailed unsteady analysis using modeling and simulation at the OLCF and became the first company to request certification from the EPA through CFD. Image Credit: SmartTruck

SmartTruck steps up simulations for certification by computation

Long-haul tractor trailers, often referred to as “18-wheelers,” transport everything from household goods to supermarket foodstuffs across the United States every year. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, these trucks moved more than 10 billion tons of goods—70.6 percent...
ORNL researcher Moonis Ally with his published theory: "Thermodynamics of Highly Concentratied Aqueous Electrolytes."

Ally’s theory has key applications in environment, energy

Of all the roles Moonis Ally has held during his life, the title of ‘problem solver’ resonates with him the most.  Ally’s commitment to problem solving, and ultimately to helping others solve problems, is what led to the theory bearing his name and the book summarizing his work at the...
Neutrons—Higher-efficiency-engines

Neutrons—Higher efficiency engines

April 2, 2018 - Oak Ridge National Laboratory has partnered with FCA US LLC and casting manufacturer Nemak to develop a new cast aluminum alloy for engine cylinder heads, which could lead to more fuel-efficient internal combustion engines. Using neutron diffraction at ORNL’s Spallation...
Rose Ruther and Jagjit Nanda have been collaborating to develop a membrane for a low-cost redox flow battery for grid-scale energy storage. Image credit: ORNL/Carlos Jones

Novel membrane advances low-cost, grid-scale energy storage

Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists have developed a crucial component for a new kind of low-cost stationary battery system utilizing common materials and designed for grid-scale electricity storage. Large, economical electricity storage systems can benefit the nation’s grid in...
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Energy Efficiency and Research Analysis Supported Programs

   (hi-res image) Better Plants Program Through the Department of Energy's (DOE) Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO), EERA Group supports the Better Plants Program, which encourages manufacturers and water utilities to set long-term goals to...

Neighborhood gets smart about energy use with ORNL tech

Tucked away on about five acres outside of Birmingham, Alabama, sits innovative technology that could change the way homeowners manage energy consumption. The Southeast’s first-of- its-kind residential microgrid is the main energy source for 62 state-of-the-art homes in what Alabama Power...
MVP Ribbon Cutting

World’s first medium/large-scale 3D thermoset printer installed at ORNL in partnership with Magnum Venus Products

Magnum Venus Products (MVP), in partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), recently celebrated the installation of the first commercially available medium/large-scale thermoset 3D printer at the Department of Energy’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at ORNL. MVP and ORNL...
In a controlled environment, the fastest-growing orientation of graphene crystals overwhelms the others and gets "evolutionarily selected" into a single crystal, even on a polycrystalline substrate, without having to match the substrate’s orientation.

Method to grow large single-crystal graphene could advance scalable 2D materials

A new method to produce large, monolayer single-crystal-like graphene films more than a foot long relies on harnessing a “survival of the fittest” competition among crystals. The novel technique, developed by a team led by the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, may open...
map of California EV stations

Transportation—Better charging access

Officials responsible for anticipating the demand for electric vehicle charging stations could get help through a sophisticated new method developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The method considers electric vehicle volume and the random timing of vehicles arriving at charging...
Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Bo Shen works with a prototype window air conditioning unit that cools using propane, which lowers costs, increases efficiency and benefits the environment.

Refrigerants – Cooling with propane

Cooling homes and small office spaces could become less costly and more efficient with new early stage technology developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Researchers designed a window air conditioning unit that uses propane as the refrigerant, cooling the air with 17 percent higher...
Hybrid sedan

Sensible driving saves more gas than drivers think

It’s common knowledge that driving aggressively can dent gas mileage, but it’s difficult to determine exactly how much gas drivers waste. A new study by researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory has quantified the impact speeding and slamming on the brakes...

Homes get smart

Ways to give homeowners more centralized control over how much electricity their home uses—from the air conditioning unit to the heat pump water heater—are being developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory. An ORNL team is working with Southern Company and Alabama Power on its Smart...

Neutrons peer into a running engine

In a first-of-a-kind experiment, researchers used neutrons to investigate the performance of a new aluminum alloy in a gasoline-powered engine—while the engine was running. A team from the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory worked with industry partners to perform the...

Buildings: Airtight savings

A new tool developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory can help homeowners and builders calculate energy loss when air leaks through a building’s envelope, the physical barrier separating the interior and exterior. Starting with specific building metrics, the calculator analyzes multizone...

Tailoring component performance by combining 3D printing, casting

A new manufacturing method created by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Rice University combines 3D printing with traditional casting to produce damage-tolerant components composed of multiple materials. Composite components made by pouring an aluminum alloy over a printed steel lattice...

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