Blog Posts
ARPA-E focuses on next-generation energy innovation to create a sustainable energy future. The agency provides R&D support to businesses, universities, and national labs to develop technologies that could fundamentally change the way we get, use, and store energy. Since 2009, ARPA-E has provided approximately $2 billion in support to more than 800 energy technology projects. In January, we introduced a new series to highlight the transformational technology our project teams are developing across the energy portfolio. Check out these projects turning ideas into reality.

Blog Posts
ARPA-E strives for excellence in both program development and program integration, to encourage new discussions and new perspectives.  This approach was on display at the recent ARPA-E “Ocean Week,” held from January 28-30, in Washington.  This three-day voyage into ARPA-E’s ocean-focused programs consisted of three events: The Macroalgae Research Inspiring Novel Energy Resources (MARINER) Program Review, the Aerodynamic Turbines Lighter and Afloat with Nautical Technologies and Integrated Servo-control (ATLANTIS) Program Kickoff, and a Submarine Hydrokinetic Industry Day.

Blog Posts
Newest ARPA-E Program Director Dr. Robert (Bob) J. Ledoux’s professional experience ranges from professor to entrepreneur and his patents from nonintrusive cargo inspection to medical technologies. Recently we had a chance to visit with Dr. Ledoux to discuss how he will bring his experience to bear to further ARPA-E’s mission.

Slick Sheet: Project
More information on this project is coming soon!

Slick Sheet: Project
More information on this project is coming soon!

Slick Sheet: Project
Many lower-cost fusion concepts require high-performance, long-life electrodes for plasma generation, sustainment, and refueling. Due to the plasma and high-current-density environments needed for fusion, electrodes can erode quickly, which contaminates and cools the plasma, leading to increased maintenance costs.

Slick Sheet: Project
Rare earth barium copper oxide (REBCO) tapes enable >20-T (Tesla) magnets in compact, high-field magnetic-fusion devices. Commercial REBCO tapes are expensive at $300/kA-m (kiloampere-meter) based on the operating condition of HTS (high-temperature superconducting) magnets for compact fusion energy systems. The tape cost must be reduced to approximately $10/kA-m for HTS-based fusion systems to be commercially cost-competitive.

Slick Sheet: Project
One of the biggest challenges facing the practical deployment of fusion energy-based power is the effective management of tritium resources. Tritium, an isotope of hydrogen with a short half-life, is a fusion fuel and must be continuously generated, recovered, and recycled in any tritium-fueled fusion power plant. Currently, scalable tritium extraction and pumping technologies do not exist. Colorado School of Mines will develop and demonstrate engineered composite membranes for efficient tritium extraction from breeder media and the vessel exhaust.

Slick Sheet: Project
No technology available today can provide the neutron flux, energy spectrum, and other characteristics required to test and qualify materials’ performance under prototypical fusion operating conditions. The fusion community acknowledges the need for a materials test facility soon or risk a crippling impact on the ability to effectively design and test a fusion pilot plant.

Slick Sheet: Project
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) aims to cost-effectively fabricate, at scale, high-performance, oxide-dispersion-strengthened (ODS) steel with advanced-manufacturing methods for fusion breeding-blanket applications. PNNL will enable cost-effective production of oxide-dispersion strengthened steel by consolidating and extruding powders made with gas atomization reaction synthesis (GARS) in just one step by using first-of-a-kind shear-assisted processing and extrusion (ShAPE).