leading a major new, and controversial, NSF program on Research Applied to National Needs, or RANN. The program funded large research projects on the scarcity of energy and environmental and material resources and was the first major NSF program to issue grants to small businesses, to emphasize engineering and applied research, and to fund social scientists to simultaneously study infrastructure problems. He earned a presidential distinguished service award in 1977. Moving back to the San Francisco Bay area, from 1977 to 1979 Eggers served as director of research laboratories at the Lockheed Palo Alto Research Laboratory.
Eggers finished his career by developing the technology base for renewable energy. From 1979 until his death, he served as president of RANN, Inc., an energy engineering consultancy doing research on solar and wind power. This company was separate from the research program he advanced at NSF, which had since been terminated, but was inspired by that agenda. He also served on the advisory board of the Solar Energy Research Institute and engineered new technologies for wind power. He devised a widely used active control system that altered the pitch of wind-turbine blades under varied winds, as well as a biplane design for twinned turbine blades.
Among his many awards, Eggers was elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering, a fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, a fellow of the American Astronautical Society, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
He had a lifelong love of skiing and golf.
Al died on September 22, 2006, at the age of 84 and is survived by two sons, Philip and Alfred Eggers III; by three grandchildren, Andrew, Alexander, and Amanda; by his brother, Bob Eggers; and by his wife of 56 years, Elizabeth Ann.