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Nor Farida Harun mentor research associates in NETL’s HyPer Facility. (Photo taken before 2020)
NETL’s First Quarter of FY22 Marked with Success

Director’s Corner

by Brian Anderson, Ph.D.

Above: Nor Farida Harun mentor research associates in NETL’s HyPer Facility. (Photo taken before 2020) 

Innovation continues to thrive at NETL, as demonstrated in another productive quarter and as a direct result of our talented team. Thanks to your determination and dedication, we kicked off FY22 with impressive results. 

In RIC, we celebrated the award-winning Multi-functional Sorbent Technology that is highly effective in cleaning contaminated waterways and removing metals from electronic and pharmaceutical production processes. We also commended a 10-year milestone for EDX, which is advancing energy and environmental research and development and enabling us to meet important clean energy goals.     

In TDC, our work with our partners is accelerating the transition to a lower-carbon world. For example, an NETL-industry partnership rapidly scaled up a new carbon capture technology that could significantly lower the capital investment needed to develop carbon capture plants at gigaton scale. In another project, a bio-cement technology developed by university and industry partners with NETL oversight has been licensed as a commercial product that helps seal problematic defects in wellbore casing cement. 

These, and other projects across our lab, are making great strides in our work to drive innovation and deliver solutions for an environmentally sustainable and prosperous energy future. 

Our work also garnered recognition through several prestigious awards this quarter, highlighting the impact and reach of our world-class talent:  

  • A Special Recognition Award bestowed to NETL research scientist Nor Farida Harun, Ph.D., during the Women of Color in STEM Conference for her work toward developing a smart electrical grid. 
  • A prestigious R&D 100 Award for a game-changing, low-cost multifunctional sorbent technology (MUST) that is highly effective in cleaning contaminated waterway and removing metals from production processes. Members of the team that developed MUST are McMayah Gray, Thomas Tarka, Nick Siefert and Walter Wilfong. Other members of the team are Qiuming Wang, Fan Shi, Tuo Ji and Brian Kail. 
  • Three DOE Secretary’s Honor Awards, presented to Christina Lopano, Ph.D., for her research that is advancing efforts to end resiliency on offshore suppliers and establish a reliable domestic source of rare earth elements and critical minerals; NETL’s EDX Development and Operations Team — Kelly Rose, Jennifer Bauer, Chad Rowan, Mark Dehlin, Tracey Williams, Aaron Barkhurst, Vic Baker, Timothy Jones, Daniel McFarland, Catherine Hines, Joel Chittum, Joseph Obradovich, Michael Miller and Tracy Rutter — for providing a platform from which data from more than 20,000 research projects can be accessed; NETL’s MUST Team for their suite of sorbents that offer practical, affordable and green approach to removing metals from water supplies. 
  • The prestigious Lectureship in Fluidization Award, presented to NETL Senior Researcher Sofiane Benyahia, Ph.D., for his outstanding scientific/technical research contributions with impact in the field of fluidization and fluid-particle flow systems. 
  • A nomination from the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration for NETL acting technology manager Mary Anne Alvin to serve as Henry Krumb Lecturer for her paper titled “Rare Earth Elements (REE) and Critical Minerals (CMs).” 

This is only a glimpse of our team’s many successes. Your contributions this quarter were tremendous and are making a positive impact on lives across the globe as we work to ensure affordable, abundant and reliable energy that drives a robust economy and national security while developing technologies to manage carbon across the full life cycle and enabling environmental sustainability for all Americans. A snapshot of this quarter’s accomplishments are available in this newly released report (PDF). 

Congratulations on another successful quarter.