DOE Lab Developing Alternative Fuels for Dept. of Defense Marine Engines

Aug. 10, 2023
In collaboration with Fairbanks Morse Defense, the lab will develop low-lifecycle carbon fuels like methanol, ammonia, hydrogen, and biodiesel.

The Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Fairbanks Morse Defense (FMD) to collaborate on developing and integrating alternative fuel technologies, such as low-lifecycle carbon fuels (LLCFs) like methanol, ammonia, hydrogen, and biodiesel. These efforts are in an attempt to reduce marine engine reliance on fossil fuels, which represent a significant annual expense for the Department of Defense.

“As climate change impacts our global waterways, these changing and unpredictable impacts directly affect our ability to protect the freedom of the seas,” said George Whittier, FMD CEO. “We’re fully committed to supporting the Department of Defense’s 2030 decarbonization goals with fuel and engine technologies that will create a more sustainable future for the Navy, and we look forward to working with ORNL to explore these possibilities.”

Under the MOU, ORNL will use its research and development expertise to provide support in combustion engine strategies for the LLCFs, high-temperature materials, additive manufacturing, elastomer compatibility, and corrosion. Meanwhile, FMD will provide its power and propulsion design and manufacturing proficiency to promote the use of the LLCFs and define the performance and durability requirements.

The MOU will also have the partnership: