A University Coalition for Basic and Applied Fossil Energy Research and Development (UCFER) was established in 2015 to advance basic and applied fossil energy research through mechanisms that promote collaboration among the Department of Energy (DOE) and the universities that are members of the Coalition by the coordination of research and the sharing of data. Its collaborative research focuses on coal, natural gas, and oil and in five core competencies:
- Geological and Environmental Systems, consisting of research on geomaterials, fluid flow in geologic media, and geospatial and strategic field monitoring.
- Materials Engineering and Manufacturing, consisting of research on the design, development, and deployment of advanced functional and structural materials for use in extreme service environments.
- Energy conversion Engineering, consisting of the evaluation, integration, control and performance modeling of processes and components for developing innovative energy conversion processes and transformational technologies.
- Systems Engineering and Analysis, consisting of analysis and design of advanced energy systems such as power plants, energy markets, and energy-environment interactions.
- Computational Science and Engineering, consisting of research involving high-performance computing and data analytics that enable the generation of information and insights through the integration of experimental data and engineering analyses.