19 Jun (NucNet): The US Department of Energy has announced nearly $64m in awards for advanced nuclear energy technology to national laboratories, industry, and 39 US universities in 29 states.
In total, the DOE’s Office of Nuclear Energy selected 89 projects for funding for nuclear energy research, facility access, and technology and infrastructure development.
The DOE said the awards are being given under three DOE nuclear energy programmes: the Nuclear Energy University Programme (NEUP), the Nuclear Energy Enabling Technologies (NEET) programme, and the Nuclear Science User Facilities (NSUF) programme.
“Because nuclear energy is such a vital part of our nation’s energy portfolio, these investments are necessary to ensuring that future generations of Americans will continue to benefit from safe, clean, reliable, and resilient nuclear energy,” said Ed McGinnis, the DOE’s principal deputy assistant secretary for nuclear energy.
“Our commitment to providing researchers with access to the fundamental infrastructure and capabilities needed to develop advanced nuclear technologies is critical.”
The DOE is awarding $47m through the NEUP to support 63 university-led nuclear energy research and development projects in 29 states. These projects will maintain US leadership in nuclear research by providing science and engineering staff and their students opportunities to develop innovative technologies and solutions for civil nuclear capabilities.
An additional $5m is being awarded under the programme to support 18 university-led projects for research reactor and infrastructure improvements.
The DOE is awarding $5m under the NEET programme for five research and development projects led by DOE national laboratories, industry, and universities.
Under its NSUF programme, the DOE has chosen one industry-led and two university-led projects to investigate important nuclear fuel and material applications. These projects will receive $6.6m in total.
Earlier this month the DOE announced up to $24m to fund 10 projects that will boost advanced nuclear reactor designs.
The awards play “a fundamental role in ensuring America retains its technological leadership in commercial nuclear energy”, the Washington-based Nuclear Energy Institute lobby group said.