The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded nearly $55 million to 24 projects to develop and deploy cutting-edge vehicle technologies. The DOE says the funding will go toward a wide range of research, development and demonstration projects that aim to reduce the price and improve the efficiency of plug-in electric, alternative fuel, and conventional vehicles.
‘Investing in advanced vehicle technologies will improve the efficiency of today's vehicles while also supporting the next generation of hybrid and electric vehicles,’ comments Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. ‘The deployment of these technologies will give Americans more options when they are choosing a vehicle, while also creating jobs and cutting harmful carbon emissions.’
The funding focuses on two major areas.
First, the DOE is supporting technologies to help meet the agency's EV Everywhere Grand Challenge to make plug-in electric vehicles as affordable to own and operate as today's gasoline-powered vehicles by 2022.
Sixteen projects are aimed at reducing the cost and improving the performance of key PEV components. This includes developing advanced manufacturing and process technologies for advanced battery materials, advanced electrode and cell fabrication manufacturing, and integrated wide band gap power modules for next-generation plug-in vehicles. Other projects focus on electric drive battery modeling for vehicles and advancing lightweight materials research to help electric vehicles increase their range and reduce battery needs.Â Â Â
Second, the DOE is supporting fuel efficiency improvements in passenger vehicles and commercial trucks.
Eight projects are aimed at improvements including developing and demonstrating dual-fuel or dedicated natural gas engine technologies for high-efficiency medium- and heavy-duty vehicles to reduce petroleum usage and developing advanced computational fluid dynamics models to accelerate the development of advanced engine technologies.Â Building on the SuperTruck initiative – which the DOE launched in 2009 to boost the efficiency of tractor trailers – other projects aim at developing enabling technologies to further improve the efficiency of heavy-duty diesel engines.
Notably, through the Advanced Vehicle Power Technology Alliance with the DOE, the U.S. Department of the Army is also contributing an additional $2.26 million in co-funding to support projects focused on battery modeling technologies and computational fluid dynamics.
A full list of the winning projects is available here.