Call for White Papers: Directed Funding Opportunity for Collaboration with National Laboratories

The Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) initiative focuses on developing new high-performance fuels that, when combined with advanced combustion approaches, can boost engine efficiency and cut emissions. To accelerate adoption of new fuels and blendstocks from renewable resources which enable higher efficiency and lower emissions in on-highway vehicles, Co-Optima seeks proposals to leverage national laboratory resources to overcome key technical challenges. Proposals should address specific technical challenges and barriers that Co-Optima researchers can address to move performance-advantaged biofuels closer to market in conjunction with advanced, high-efficiency engines.

Topics of interest to this DFO include:

Topic 1. Foundational knowledge at the fuel-engine interface
This call seeks proposals to advance foundational knowledge supporting advancement of the Co-Optima goals and objectives.

Topic 2. Applied R&D advancing Co-Optima aims
This call seeks proposals focused on applied research and development to move technologies or bio-blendstocks identified in Co-Optima closer to commercial adoption.

In both cases we are particularly interested in proposals leveraging the following capabilities:

Bio-Blendstock/Fuel Production Research,
Bio-Blendstock/Fuel Property Research

Target Identification,
Physical and Chemical Fuel Property Prediction, and
Impacts Analysis

Who is Eligible?

All U.S. domestic for-profit or non-profit businesses interested in Co-Optima goals and objectives in advancing fuel-engine Co-Optimization are eligible. Foreign entities, whether for-profit or otherwise, including U.S. incorporated subsidiaries with a foreign-owned parent company, are eligible to apply; however, a waiver request will be required. Approval of this waiver is subject to DOE discretion and is necessary to complete the CRADA contract. All project work under this DFO must be performed in the United States (100% of all direct labor).

How to Apply

To apply, industry applicants are asked to submit a white paper project proposal (find the template here) by email to [email protected]. All submissions should be no more than 12 pages total in length and should succinctly describe the technical problem, the approach to developing a solution, what Co-Optima capabilities are needed, why DOE resources are necessary, and the anticipated impact towards increasing adoption of biomass-derived fuels.

Register for the February 28, 2020 Webinar

Award Terms

Selected project awards are anticipated to range from $200,000 up to $300,000 of Co-Optima national laboratory assistance over a project duration of 12-18 months. Co-Optima anticipates a total of 7-10 funded projects as part of this DFO. Industry partners will fund their own labor, materials, and other expenses directly, which contribute toward a 20 percent minimum cost-share requirement. Contractual terms will be managed through a non-negotiable, pre-established Co-Optima Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA).

Templates are available here:
Single Lab, single industry participant
Multiple Labs, single industry participant
Multiple Labs, multiple industry participants

About Co-Optima

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Co-Optimization of Fuels and Engines (Co-Optima) initiative is accelerating the introduction of clean, affordable, and scalable high-performance fuels and engines. This first-of-its-kind effort is simultaneously tackling fuel and engine research and development to maximize light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicle fuel economy and performance, while mapping lower-cost pathways to reduce emissions, leveraging diverse domestic fuel resources, boosting U.S. economic productivity, and enhancing national energy security. Co-Optima brings together DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE), nine national laboratories and numerous universities, industry and government stakeholders.


Go here for more information about Co-Optima capabilities, or contact the Co-Optima program [email protected]

*Federal funds allocated to DOE national laboratories for providing Co-Optima resources only, subject to available DOE and Co-Optima budget. Industry cost share ≥ 20 percent.