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Enabling Our Transition to a Sustainable Energy Future
ORISE research associate Mengyu (Kelly) Guan and ORISE post-doctoral research fellow Scott Montross analyzing Central Appalachian clay for rare earth elements at NETL in Albany, Oregon.

Director’s Corner

by Brian Anderson, Ph.D.

New Years are always exciting as they promise a fresh start and a year of possibilities. At NETL, we’re building on our foundation of innovation and are resolved to deliver integrated solutions to enable transformation to a sustainable energy future. 

I’m confident that 2022 will be a productive year of breakthroughs and technology advances as we continue our work to meet clean energy goals calling for a net-zero carbon emission electricity sector by 2035 and economy-wide net-zero emissions by 2050. 

To meet these goals, NETL is working to advance critical technologies like carbon capture and storage, hydrogen production, and materials that will enable operation at high pressures and temperatures to meet global electricity demand while reducing overall emissions and increasing power generating efficiency. 

Together with our research partners, we’re advancing high-value solid products, including carbon metal alloys and additive manufacturing materials, from domestic carbon ore that will create jobs in Appalachian coal communities. We’re supporting technologies to extract rare earth elements and critical minerals from domestic coal-based resources (including coal refuse, ash and acid mine drainage) to enable our nation’s independence from foreign reliance on these important materials. We’re developing next-generation sensors to accurately monitor deep subsurface operations and coatings to reduce methane emissions from oil and gas pipelines, and we’re pursuing revolutionary technologies like microwave catalysts to produce carbon-neutral hydrogen from captured carbon dioxide and waste methane.  

These are just a few of the many innovations NETL scientists and engineers are tackling in 2022 to drive innovation and deliver solutions for an environmentally sustainable and prosperous energy future. 

I look forward to sharing our successes in the weeks and months ahead.