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Project Title:

America's Energy Future: Electricity from Renewables: Technology Opportunities, Risks, and Tradeoffs
PIN: DEPS-L-07-02-C        

Major Unit:

Division on Earth and Life Studies
Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences
National Academy of Engineering
Transportation Research Board

Sub Unit:
RSO: Holmes, John

Subject/Focus Area:


Project Scope
This panel will examine the technical potential for electric power generation with alternative sources such as wind, solar-photovoltaic, geothermal, solar-thermal, hydroelectric, and other renewable sources. The panel will also consider the broader energy applications of renewables, especially low-temperature solar applications that may reduce electricity demands. The panel will evaluate technologies based on their estimated times to initial commercial deployment and will provide the following information for each:

" Initial deployment times < 10 years: costs, performance, and impacts
" 10 to 25 years: barriers, implications for costs, and R&D challenges/needs
" > 25 years: barriers and R&D challenges/needs, especially basic research needs.

The primary focus of the study will be on the quantitative characterization of technologies with initial deployment times < 10 years. Thus, the panel will focus on those renewable sources that show the most promise for initial commercial development within a decade leading to substantial impact on the U.S. energy system as well as consider the potential use of such technologies globally. In keeping with the charge to the overall scope of the America's Energy Future Study Committee, the panel will not recommend policy choices, but will assess the state of development of technologies. In addition to a principal focus on renewable energy technologies for power generation, the panel will address the challenges of incorporating such technologies into the power grid as well as the potential of improvements in the national electricity grid that could enable better and more extensive utilization of wind, solar-thermal, solar photovoltaics, and other renewable technologies.

The project is sponsored by the The National Academies, Dow Chemical Company Foundation, the United States Department of Energy, BP America, GE Energy, General Motors Corporation, Intel Corporation, the W. M. Keck Foundation and Fred Kavli and the Kavli Foundation.

The approximate start date for the project is July 2007.

A report of the panel is expected to be issued at the end of the project in approximately 18 months.


 
Project Duration: 18 months    

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Committee Membership
Committee Membership

Meetings
 Meeting 1 - 09/18/2007
 Meeting 2 - 12/06/2007
 Meeting 3 - 01/16/2008
 Meeting 4 - 03/11/2008
 Meeting 5 - 05/13/2008

Reports

Reports having no URL can be seen
at the Public Access Records Office
Electricity from Renewable Resources: Status, Prospects, and Impediments