February 20 (Renewables Now) - The US Department of Energy (DOE) will grant up to USD 100 million (EUR 92.7m) in financing that will support research on methods for producing liquid chemical fuels through the use of sunlight.
The funding call aims to back research on emerging technologies and challenges for the production of solar fuels using artificial photosynthesis. This process, which normally includes only sunlight, carbon dioxide (CO2) and water as inputs, can include other feedstocks such as nitrogen. According to DOE, the use of artificial photosynthesis can diversify the fuel supply, minimise unwanted byproducts and boost the sustainability of the energy system.
The funding will be provided over the next five years, with the first awards planned to be allocated in 2020, the DOE said on Wednesday. The final date for submitting applications is May 27, 2020, with pre-applications to be accepted by March 24, 2020.
“Sunlight is our most basic energy source, and the ability to generate fuels directly from sunlight has the potential to transform our energy economy and vastly enhance US energy security,” said Under Secretary for Science Paul Dabbar.
Universities, nonprofits, national laboratories and agencies are all invited to participate, the DOE said. The government agency will make the investment through the Fuels from Sunlight Hub programme.
(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.927)