OSP FO# 11-144

AGENCY: U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)/Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)/Golden Field Office (GFO)

PROGRAM: Geothermal Technology Advancement for Rapid Development of Resources in the U.S.

OBJECTIVES: This program provides funding to to develop and validate cost-competitive technologies and tools to accelerate the growth of geothermal energy in the United States. It will enable the Department of Energy (DOE) to partner with industry, academia and the national laboratories to discover new geothermal resources, develop innovative methods, and demonstrate high-impact geothermal technologies. This program directly supports the goals of the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Geothermal Technologies Program which are to increase national energy options, reduce vulnerability to disruptions and increase flexibility of the market to meet U.S. needs.

The DOE is requesting proposals through this program for work that improves the performance and reduces the cost of drilling, reservoir engineering, and characterization technologies to identify and develop sustainable reservoirs at lower costs. This program covers the following six research topics:

  • Advanced Exploratory Drilling Technologies: The goal is to lower the cost and risk of drilling for both undiscovered hydrothermal and EGS by developing and/or refining new, non-traditional/innovative, lower cost drilling technologies while increasing the rate of penetration and/or performance in deep crystalline rock formations with high temperatures, pressures, and corrosivity.
  • Advanced Well Completion Technologies: The goal is to lower the cost and risk of wellfield development for both hydrothermal and EGS by developing innovative and/or refining existing well completion technologies with the overall goal of reducing costs and increasing geothermal well and field lifetimes. 
  • Zonal Isolation: The goal is to effectively block lost circulation zones in open (uncased) and cased holes and to facilitate the creation of multiple fracture zones in a geothermal reservoir using new innovative methods, packers, lost circulation materials, mechanical or non-mechanical diverters, expandable tubular, or other methods capable of effectively providing zonal isolation at high temperatures and pressures. 
  • Observation Tools and Data Collection System for Reservoir Stimulation: The goal is to understand the evolution of a reservoir during EGS stimulation activities by developing new data collection techniques, temperature and pressure rated components, and tools (or modifying existing tools) such that reservoir inputs and behavior can be accurately measured and correlated to permeability enhancement, etc. 
  • Geophysical Exploration Technologies: The goal is to advance exploration technologies to better locate potential geothermal resources that lack surface manifestations, thereby improving resource discovery. 
  • Geochemistry/Rock-Fluid Interactions: The goal is to lower upfront risk and cost of geothermal resource discovery and increase reservoir sustainability.

For all Topic Areas, applicants MUST include the following critical requirements to be considered for Merit Review: Technology and Performance Description, Levelized Cost of Electricity (LCOE), Commercialization Plan, Data Plan, Financial Viability/Capability. In addition all application must propose two Phases for each project/Topic Area, a Proof of Concept Phase (Phase I) and a Prototype/Validation Phase (Phase II).

Please see the program annoucement below for further program details.

B.U. Internal Deadline: June 27, 2011
Application Deadline: July 15, 2011

FUNDING INFORMATION: The DOE anticipates providing $70 million to fund 3-7 awards per topic area under this program, including $17 million in FY2011 and additional funding of $53 million available in FY2012 and FY2013. Award amounts will range between approximately $1 million and $5 million per year for up to three years. Cost sharing is required at 20% of the total allowable costs for both Phase I and Phase II (please see the program announcement for details regarding applicability of Phase I cost share based upon the cost share waiver).

AGENCY CONTACT: Questions related to the Funding Opportunity Announcement must be submitted to FOA522@go.doe.gov, and should be submitted not later than 3 calendar days prior to the final application due date. Questions related to use of the EERE eXCHANGE website should be submitted to:  EERE-ExchangeSupport@hq.doe.gov.

Web: http://www07.grants.gov/search/search.do?&mode=VIEW&oppId=98573

REMARKS: An internal deadline has been established to coordinate institutional cost-sharing commitments for this program. Principal Investigators (PIs) interested in submitting a proposal should forward a memorandum to their Associate Dean by Monday, June 27, 2011. In the memorandum, (1) briefly describe the proposed project, (2) list key participating faculty, (3) itemize all cost-sharing commitments being requested from the University, within the context of a fully developed project budget, and (4) cite any program features which should make it particularly competitive for DOE funding. The memorandum should be countersigned by the relevant department chair/center director to indicate endorsement of the project. After the Dean’s assessment, if a commitment of Provost funds is required, the memorandum will be forwarded to OSP-CRC Director Joan Kirkendall for review and then to the Provost’s Office for authorization. PIs will then be advised of authorized institutional cost-sharing commitments in time to complete the project budget and process their proposal for final review. PIs are encouraged to consult with the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) for assistance with the preparation of the project budget.

The Department of Energy requires the submission of applications through the EERE eXCHANGE website at http://eere.energy.gov/financing/exchange. Please contact the OSP Assistant Director assigned to your school or department as soon as possible to coordinate submission through the EERE eXCHANGE website.

PIs are encouraged to consult with the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) for assistance with the preparation of the project budget. Complete program guidelines and application material (CFDA # 81.087) may be obtained from the web site listed above or from the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). Please distribute this notice to any faculty or staff members who might be interested in the information. For more information, please contact the OSP at X3-4365 or ospinfo@bu.edu, or visit the OSP web site at http://www.bu.edu/osp.