Sustainability and Energy: Expert Reports
The division produces 60-70 reports per year. These reports are unique, authoritative expert evaluations. Each report is produced by a committee of experts selected by the Academy to address a particular statement of task and is subject to a rigorous, independent peer review. The experts who volunteer their time participating on study committees are vetted to make sure that the committee has the range of expertise needed to address the task, that they have a balance of perspectives, and to identify and eliminate members with conflicts of interest. All reports undergo a rigorous, independent peer review to assure that the statement of task has been addressed, that conclusions are adequately supported, and that all important issues raised by the reviewers are addressed. Thus, while the reports represent views of the committee, they also are endorsed by the Academy.
Sustainable Development of Algal Biofuels in the United States (2012)
Biofuels made from algae are gaining attention as a domestic source of renewable fuel. However, with current technologies, scaling up production of algal biofuels to meet even 5 percent of U.S. transportation fuel needs could create unsustainable demands for energy, water, and nutrient resources. Continued research and development could yield innovations to address these challenges, but determining if algal biofuel is a viable fuel alternativ... More >>Report in Brief
Transforming Combustion Research through Cyberinfrastructure (2011)
Combustion has provided society with most of its energy needs for millenia, from igniting the fires of cave dwellers to propelling the rockets that traveled to the Moon. Even in the face of climate change and the increasing availability of alternative energy sources, fossil fuels will continue to be used for many decades. However, they will likely become more expensive, and pressure to minimize undesired combustion by-products (pollutants) wil... More >>
Catalysis for Energy: Fundamental Science and Long-Term Impacts of the U.S. Department of Energy Basic Energy Sciences Catalysis Science Program (2009)
Catalysis, the process by which a substance (a catalyst) increases the rate of a chemical reaction, is essential to the ability to control chemical reactions, including those involved in energy transformations. Catalysis is therefore integral to current and future energy solutions, for example, developing environmentally benign energy sources such as biomass and solar energy, and developing efficient energy systems such as fuel cells. Thi... More >>Report in Brief