Message from the Director

UCFER Fall 2019 volument 3 newsletter header

Dr. Chunshan Song pixWelcome to the third edition of the University Coalition for Fossil Energy Research (UCFER) newsletter. Over the past year, the Coalition has been busy completing Round 1 projects, selecting Round 4 projects for funding, and working on Round 5 solicitation. Additionally, new members were selected for UCFER’s Executive Council (EC), Technical Advisory Council (TAC), and Core Competency Advisory Board (CCAB).

Brian Anderson, a previous TAC member for West Virginia University, has been appointed the director of the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Congratulations to Brian!  We look forward to continuing our work with Brian and NETL under his leadership. Richard Bajura has become the new TAC member from West Virginia University. TAC held its annual election and Götz Veser of the University of Pittsburgh was elected to the Executive Council for a two-year term. Roe-Hoan Yoon has completed his term of service on the EC and will continue to serve as a TAC member representing Virginia Tech. Ye Xu from Louisiana State University has become a new CCAB member, replacing K. Gus Kousoulas, who has retired. Changmin Son is the new CCAB member from Virginia Tech, replacing Srinath Ekkad who has left Virginia Tech to become department head of mechanical and aerospace engineering at North Carolina State University. Hongcai Zhou has replaced Akhil Dattagupta as a new CCAB member from Texas A&M, and Claire White of Princeton University has become a new CCAB member, replacing Eric Larsen, who stepped down. We welcome all the new EC, TAC, and CCAB members, thank all the current and past members and all the leaders and faculty members of the UCFER member universities for their support, participation, and contribution.

Researchers on four projects from Round 1 and one project from Round 2 have completed their project work. Started in 2016 and 2017, respectively, those projects already provided UCFER, NETL, and the larger fossil fuel research community with forty-three publications and presentations. Three projects from Round 1 also resulted in techniques, databases, or software that are useful for other DOE and NETL projects and will continue to help future researchers. I would like to congratulate the principle investigators (PIs), co-PIs, and all the faculty, students, and other team members who worked on those projects, and I commend their accomplishments.

We have just announced the selection of six projects, from the forty-one proposals submitted, for the Round 4 of UCFER funding. The selected proposals are briefly highlighted in this issue. I would like to congratulate all the university investigators who were awarded, and I look forward to seeing how their research and collaboration with NETL progresses.

Turning to the future of UCFER, I am pleased to report that the Round 5 UCFER Request for Proposals was released to all fifteen member universities on August 17 and all the proposals that we received in October will be reviewed by the established expert peer review and panel review process. The selection of Round 5 proposals will be announced in our next newsletter in 2020.

We are grateful to NETL and DOE for the continued support, and we wish to thank all the leaders and management team for UCFER at NETL. I would also like to thank all the members of the UCFER operation management team at Penn State and at NETL for their hard work and dedication to this large program. We hope you will enjoy reading this newsletter, and, as always, we welcome your comments and suggestions.

Chunshan Song signature

Dr. Chunshan Song
Director, EMS Energy Institute, Penn State
Distinguished Professor of Fuel Science and Professor of Chemical Engineering