DOE Announces $5 Million to Improve Flexibility and Reliability of Advanced Power Plant Technology

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management today announced that it has selected the West Virginia University Research Corporation to receive $5 million for the research and development of an advanced component that can improve the ability of thermal power plants to generate highly-flexible, low-carbon power from traditional, renewable, and nuclear energy.  

The component—an additively-manufactured graded composite transition joint (AM-GCTJ)—will aim to join different metals within thermal power plant parts so they can better withstand the numerous stresses and extreme changes in weather that come from cold and warm startups, fast-load ramping, and frequent shutdowns that are typically associated with thermal power  plant operations.

The successful completion of this project will develop a cost-effective and readily scalable AM-GCTJ that eliminates the common problems experienced with conventional dissimilar metal welds, which can fail prematurely under those same conditions. This project will support DOE’s High Performance Materials program, which focuses on improvements in low-carbon thermal power generation to enhance the nation’s materials supply chain while creating good-paying jobs.

Selected Project:

Additively Manufactured Graded Composite Transition Joints for Dissimilar Metal Weldments in Advanced Ultra-Supercritical Power Plant – West Virginia University Research Corporation

DOE Funding: $4,999,998 Non-DOE Funding: $1,253,601; Total Value: $6,253,599

The Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management’s (FECM) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) will manage the project.

The DOE’s FECM funds research and development projects to reduce the cost of advanced fossil energy technologies and further the sustainable use of the nation’s fossil resources. To learn more about the programs within the FECM, visit the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management website or sign up for FECM news announcements. More information about the National Energy Technology Laboratory is available on the NETL website.