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Government
energy.gov

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Investments

1183

Portfolio Exits

102

Funds

1

Partners & Customers

10

About U.S. Department of Energy

The mission of the Department of Energy is to address America's energy, environmental, and nuclear challenges through science and technology solutions.

U.S. Department of Energy Headquarter Location

1000 Independence Ave., SW

Washington, DC, 20585,

United States

(202) 586-5000

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Expert Collections containing U.S. Department of Energy

Expert Collections are analyst-curated lists that highlight the companies you need to know in the most important technology spaces.

Find U.S. Department of Energy in 1 Expert Collection, including Synthetic Biology.

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Synthetic Biology

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Latest U.S. Department of Energy News

An Enhanced Geothermal System Uses Oil And Gas Technology To Mine Low-Carbon Energy. Part 1.

May 20, 2022

I write on fossil energy, climate, and the transition to renewables. The US Department of Energy (DOE) has funded a project called FORGE where hot granite rock will be drilled and fracked using the best oil and gas technology. An overall goal is to see if water pumped down one well can be circulated through the granite and heated before pumped up a second well to drive turbines that generate electricity. John McLennan, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Utah, is the co-principal investigator for this DOE project. A webinar presentation on this topic was sponsored by NSI on April 6, 2022: F rontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE): An Update and Lookahead Following are questions posed to John McLennan, and his answers. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Q1. Can you provide a brief history of geothermal energy? From early work at Larderello in Italy, in the early 1900s, geothermal energy (for electric generation and direct use) has expanded to an installed electric generation capacity of 15.6 GWe (GigaWatts of electricity) in 2021. The utilization is global – more than 25 countries worldwide. However, allocation is still a small portion of the world’s energy portfolio. Looking at this global distribution, conventionally, geothermal energy is constrained to near-surface expression of elevated temperature as would occur near plate boundaries, volcanoes, etc. MORE FOR YOU The United States has the largest installed geothermal electric generation capacity, followed by Indonesia, Philippines, Turkey, New Zealand, Mexico, Italy, Kenya, Iceland, Japan. Of these operations in the United States, wells producing geothermal energy might average 4 to 6 MWe. As a rule-of-thumb, at 392°F (200°C) and flowing at 9 bpm (378 gpm), on the order of 1 MWe can be generating, maybe servicing 759 to 1000 homes in the United States. Geothermal power plants vary in size, from a few wells (some producing up to 50 MWe) to many wells. “The Geysers, …, is the largest complex of geothermal power plants in the world. Calpine, the largest geothermal power producer in the U.S., owns and operates 13 power plants at The Geysers with a net generating capacity of about 725 megawatts of electricity - enough to power 725,000 homes or a city the size of San Francisco.” Conventional geothermal power system. Q2. What are enhanced geothermal systems, and where is fracking applied? About fifty years ago, the concept of Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) was envisioned by scientists and engineers at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratories (now LANL). Back then, the concept was known as hot dry rock (HDR). One methodology is to drill an injection well and a production well and create the fractures interconnecting them. These fractures serve as heat exchangers – much like the radiator in an automobile. Water is used as a working fluid in this closed system (water is not lost). Cold fluid is injected down one well. It passes through the fractures and in doing so acquires heat from the hot rock. This hot fluid is produced to the surface through the second well in the doublet. At the surface, the heated fluid can be flashed to steam or run through an organic Rankine cycle plant to drive a turbine and subsequently a generator. The water, with heat taken out, is recirculated. While it is a sound idea, success has been stymied for the fifty years since its conception. While there have been multiple projects around the world, with scientific success, commerciality has not been achieved and electric generation at these pilots has not exceeded ~1 MWe. In the US however, the resource is significant. In the western United States, estimates are 519 GWe at drilling depths of less than 15,000 to 20,000 feet. Modern drilling technology, adapted from the petroleum industry makes this drilling feasible. Couple that with developments that allow drilling horizontal wells and creating a multiplicity of hydraulic fractures along these wells (imagine each fracture provides significant surface area for heat exchange) and Enhanced Geothermal Systems are feasible. Creating the fracture system by hydraulic fracturing is a key element. This is not new. It was first tried for EGS at the Fenton Hill site in the Jemez Caldera in New Mexico, during early developments by the Los Alamos National Laboratories. Of note, is one large hydraulic fracture pumped in December 1983 to attempt to interconnect two wells (before modern directional drilling was readily applied). In that hydraulic stimulation, 5.7 million gallons of water with added friction reducer were pumped at up to 50 bpm (2100 gallons per minute) at downhole pressures up to about 12,000 psi. Fine particles of CaCO3 were added for fluid loss control (to simplify the fracture system). The lessons learned from Fenton Hill, other sites around the world, and technologies from other extraction industries (inclined and horizontal drilling, multistage fracturing) encouraged the United States Department of Energy (DOE) to initiate a renewed research program known as FORGE (Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy) to build a field laboratory to test new technologies that would allow commercialization of EGS. Q3. Tell us about the site of the FORGE project in Utah and why it was selected. The DOE sponsored a competition among five prominent EGS locations in the United States. This was subsequently “down-selected” to sites in Fallon, Nevada, and Milford, Utah. In 2019, the Milford site was ultimately selected as the location of the FORGE field laboratory (see image at top of post). The criteria for selection included 1) reservoir temperatures between 175 and 225°C (hot enough to prove concepts but not so hot that technology development is impeded), 2) at depths greater than 1.5 km (deep enough that drilling technology development is feasible), 3) low permeability rock (granite at the FORGE site), 4) low risk of inducing seismicity during operations, 5) low environmental risks, and 6) no connection to a conventional geothermal system. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Q4. What is the basic design of the injection and production wells? Q5. Could you summarize the three frac treatments in the injection well and their results? Q6. What is the potential for commercial application?

U.S. Department of Energy Investments

1,183 Investments

U.S. Department of Energy has made 1,183 investments. Their latest investment was in Hornblower Group as part of their Grant on May 5, 2022.

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U.S. Department of Energy Investments Activity

investments chart

Date

Round

Company

Amount

New?

Co-Investors

Sources

5/6/2022

Grant

Hornblower Group

$8M

Yes

1

3/11/2022

Grant

Avadain

$3.77M

Yes

1

3/11/2022

Grant

Deep Isolation

$3.6M

Yes

1

3/10/2022

Grant - II

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$99M

Subscribe to see more

10

2/25/2022

Grant - II

Subscribe to see more

$99M

Subscribe to see more

10

Date

5/6/2022

3/11/2022

3/11/2022

3/10/2022

2/25/2022

Round

Grant

Grant

Grant

Grant - II

Grant - II

Company

Hornblower Group

Avadain

Deep Isolation

Subscribe to see more

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Amount

$8M

$3.77M

$3.6M

$99M

$99M

New?

Yes

Yes

Yes

Subscribe to see more

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Co-Investors

Sources

1

1

1

10

10

U.S. Department of Energy Portfolio Exits

102 Portfolio Exits

U.S. Department of Energy has 102 portfolio exits. Their latest portfolio exit was Super.tech on May 10, 2022.

Date

Exit

Companies

Valuation
Valuations are submitted by companies, mined from state filings or news, provided by VentureSource, or based on a comparables valuation model.

Acquirer

Sources

5/10/2022

Acquired

2

5/4/2022

Reverse Merger

$99M

4

4/21/2022

Acquired

1

2/17/2022

Corporate Majority

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Subscribe to see more

10

1/14/2022

Reverse Merger

Subscribe to see more

$99M

Subscribe to see more

10

Date

5/10/2022

5/4/2022

4/21/2022

2/17/2022

1/14/2022

Exit

Acquired

Reverse Merger

Acquired

Corporate Majority

Reverse Merger

Companies

Subscribe to see more

Subscribe to see more

Valuation

$99M

$99M

Acquirer

Subscribe to see more

Subscribe to see more

Sources

2

4

1

10

10

U.S. Department of Energy Fund History

1 Fund History

U.S. Department of Energy has 1 fund, including Clean Energy Fund.

Closing Date

Fund

Fund Type

Status

Amount

Sources

Clean Energy Fund

1

Closing Date

Fund

Clean Energy Fund

Fund Type

Status

Amount

Sources

1

U.S. Department of Energy Partners & Customers

10 Partners and customers

U.S. Department of Energy has 10 strategic partners and customers. U.S. Department of Energy recently partnered with National Science Foundation on May 5, 2022.

Date

Type

Business Partner

Country

News Snippet

Sources

5/5/2022

Partner

United States

Office ofEnergy Efficiency & Renewable Energy. U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation Announce Continual Collaboration on Clean Energy Technology Research and Implementation.

DOE and U.S. National Science Foundation could expand research areas to infrastructure , university-industry partnerships , education and workforce development , and activities supporting diversity , equity , and inclusion .

1

4/28/2022

Partner

United States

USC Aiken, DOE partner on new Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative facility

USC Aiken , DOE partner on new Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative facility

1

4/25/2022

Vendor

United States

08:24 EDT AirCapture, OCOchem and Partners Win $2.93 Million U.S. Department of Energy Grant to Design and Engineer a System to ...

BERKELEY , Calif. and RICHLAND , Wash. , April 25 , 2022 / PRNewswire / -- Carbon dioxide capture company AirCapture and carbon dioxide conversion company OCOchem , along with other partners , have won a $ 2.93 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to design and engineer an integrated carbon dioxide capture and conversion plant co-located at Nutrien Ltd. 's Kennewick Fertilizer Operations plant in Kennewick , Wash. .

1

3/31/2022

Vendor

United States

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10

3/3/2022

Licensee

United States

Subscribe to see more

Subscribe to see more

10

Date

5/5/2022

4/28/2022

4/25/2022

3/31/2022

3/3/2022

Type

Partner

Partner

Vendor

Vendor

Licensee

Business Partner

Country

United States

United States

United States

United States

United States

News Snippet

Office ofEnergy Efficiency & Renewable Energy. U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation Announce Continual Collaboration on Clean Energy Technology Research and Implementation.

DOE and U.S. National Science Foundation could expand research areas to infrastructure , university-industry partnerships , education and workforce development , and activities supporting diversity , equity , and inclusion .

USC Aiken, DOE partner on new Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative facility

USC Aiken , DOE partner on new Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative facility

08:24 EDT AirCapture, OCOchem and Partners Win $2.93 Million U.S. Department of Energy Grant to Design and Engineer a System to ...

BERKELEY , Calif. and RICHLAND , Wash. , April 25 , 2022 / PRNewswire / -- Carbon dioxide capture company AirCapture and carbon dioxide conversion company OCOchem , along with other partners , have won a $ 2.93 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to design and engineer an integrated carbon dioxide capture and conversion plant co-located at Nutrien Ltd. 's Kennewick Fertilizer Operations plant in Kennewick , Wash. .

Subscribe to see more

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Subscribe to see more

Subscribe to see more

Sources

1

1

1

10

10

U.S. Department of Energy Team

3 Team Members

U.S. Department of Energy has 3 team members, including former Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Owen Barwell.

Name

Work History

Title

Status

Owen Barwell

Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operating Officer

Former

Paul Dickerson

WoodRock & Co, Haynes and Boone, and U.S. Department of Commerce

Chief Operating Officer

Former

Stephen Warren CISSP

U.S. Department of the Treasury, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Federal Trade Commission, and U.S. Air Force

Chief Information Officer

Former

Name

Owen Barwell

Paul Dickerson

Stephen Warren CISSP

Work History

WoodRock & Co, Haynes and Boone, and U.S. Department of Commerce

U.S. Department of the Treasury, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Federal Trade Commission, and U.S. Air Force

Title

Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operating Officer

Chief Operating Officer

Chief Information Officer

Status

Former

Former

Former

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