In an NETL-supported project, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and the University of Kentucky (UK) are investigating ways to use carbon ore to create high-value products like carbon fiber composites for the aerospace, automotive, wind energy markets and more. The research is also helping achieve a key Biden Administration priority of environmental justice by paving the way for new clean manufacturing industries and good-paying jobs in American coal communities. “The ORNL-UK research team is using advanced multi-scale characterization techniques and high-performance computer modeling to unlock the science needed to enable competitive industrialization of carbon ore-derived carbon fibers and composites,” said NETL’s Chuck Miller, who manages the project. Carbon ore is an abundant natural resource traditionally used for thermal and metallurgical applications, but researchers across the nation are exploring its use as a feedstock for creating value-added products. Carbon fibers, for example, are used in building products, aerospace and automotive parts, rotating parts, sporting goods, and many other applications.