In fiscal year 2023 — Oct. 1–Sept. 30, 2023 — Oak Ridge National Laboratory was awarded more than $8 million in technology maturation funding through the Department of Energy’s Technology Commercialization Fund, or TCF.
ORNL’s Technology Transfer Office engaged the lab’s research staff and managed their submission of 39 TCF project proposals in FY 2023. Of these, ORNL submitted 27 full applications and was awarded funding for 12 projects — a 44% success rate.
Andrea Bowers in the Strategic Partnerships Office manages the cooperative research and development agreement process for TCF projects.
The successful projects, principal investigators and partners by call type include:
- Addressing challenges in manufacturing molten salt reactor components using novel high-strength Ni-based alloys; Govindarajan Muralidharan, Materials Science and Technology Division; Haynes International and MetalTek International.
- High-speed, high-volume and cost-effective manufacturing of intermediate temperature electrolyzer cells; Praveen Cheekatamarla, Buildings and Transportation Science Division; Redo Power Systems and Southern California Gas.
- Commercial software development for mitigating oscillations in power grids with high penetration of renewables; Yilu Liu, University of Tennessee-ORNL Governor’s Chair for Power Electronics, Electrification and Energy Infrastructure Division; and Grid Protection Alliance.
- Sustainable aviation fuel from cellulosic ethanol; Andrew Sutton, Manufacturing Science Division; and Gevo.
Vehicle Technologies Office
- Copper-carbon nanotube based ultrahigh conductivity composites for electric vehicle charging infrastructure; Tolga Aytug, Chemical Sciences Division; and Southwire Company.
- Enabling commercialization of thixomolded components fabricated using new magnesium alloy; Govindarajan Muralidharan, Materials Science and Technology Division; Leggera Technologies and Terves.
Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office, Buildings Technology Office and Office of Technology Transitions
- Non-isocyanate, biobased spray foam insulation; Diana Hun, Buildings and Transportation Science Division; and Dupont.
- Advanced desiccant clothes dryers with a heat recovery system; Kyle Gluesenkamp, Buildings and Transportation Science Division; and Samsung Electronics America.
- Additive manufacturing of polymer composite heat exchangers for heat pumps and electronics cooling operation; Kashif Nawaz, Buildings and Transportation Science Division; Carrier Corporation and Effecterra.
- Decarbonization of drying industry through innovative industrial heat pump technology; Kashif Nawaz, Buildings and Transportation Science Division; Carrier Corporation and Effecterra.
- Low-carbon, fire-resilient exterior siding; Antonio Aldykiewicz, Buildings and Transportation Science Division; and Vitriform3D. Vitriform3D is a Cohort 2022 participant in ORNL’s Innovation Crossroads, a DOE Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Program node.
- Inconel-718 printed circuit heat exchanger with microchannels for optimal thermal performance of supercritical carbon dioxide cycles; Nate See, Nuclear Energy and Fuel Cycle Division; and EarthEn. EarthEn is a Cohort 2023 participant in Innovation Crossroads.
DOE’s Office of Technology Transitions oversees and implements DOE’s technology commercialization funds across its program offices to promote energy technologies for commercial purposes.
TCF comprises $35 million in base annual appropriations plus the $62 billion provided for research, development, demonstration and commercial applications under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, or BIL, in 2021. BIL funds seek to engage a broad network of industry partners to speed the scaling of demonstration projects.
UT-Battelle manages ORNL for DOE’s Office of Science, the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States. The Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit energy.gov/science.