Renewable Power Pathways

A REVIEW OF THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY'S RENEWABLE ENERGY PROGRAMS

Committee on Programmatic Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Power Technologies

Board on Energy and Environmental Systems

Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems

National Research Council

NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS
Washington, D.C.



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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs Renewable Power Pathways A REVIEW OF THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY'S RENEWABLE ENERGY PROGRAMS Committee on Programmatic Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Power Technologies Board on Energy and Environmental Systems Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C.

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs National Academy Press 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20418 NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Committee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. This report and the study on which it is based were supported by Contract No. DE-FG01-98EE35047 (Task #2) from the U.S. Department of Energy. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project. International Standard Book Number: 0-309-06980-7 Available in limited supply from: Board on Energy and Environmental Systems National Research Council 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. IIA-270 Washington, DC 20418 202-334-3344 Additional copies available for sale from: National Academy Press 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Box 285 Washington, DC 20055 800-624-6242 or 202-334-3313 (in the Washington metropolitan area) http://www.nap.edu Copyright 2000 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America.

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES National Academy of Sciences National Academy of Engineering Institute of Medicine National Research Council The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. William A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts and Dr. William A. Wulf are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council.

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs COMMITTEE ON PROGRAMMATIC REVIEW OF THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY'S OFFICE OF POWER TECHNOLOGIES H.M. HUBBARD (chair), Pacific International Center for High Technology Research (retired), Golden, Colorado R. BRENT ALDERFER, consultant, Doylestown, Pennsylvania DAN E. ARVIZU, CH2M Hill, Greenwood Village, Colorado EVERETT H. BECKNER, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Bethesda, Maryland (until December 2, 1999) PETER BLAIR, Sigma Xi, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina CHARLES GOODMAN, Southern Company Generation, Birmingham, Alabama NATHANAEL GREENE, Natural Resources Defense Council, New York, New York JEFFREY M. PETERSON, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, Albany RICHARD E. SCHULER, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York T.W. FRASER RUSSELL, NAE,1 University of Delaware, Newark JEFFERSON W. TESTER, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge Liaisons from the Board on Energy and Environmental Systems ROBERT W. SHAW, JR., Aretê Corporation, Center Harbor, New Hampshire JACK WHITE, The Winslow Group, LLC, Vienna, Virginia Project Staff RICHARD CAMPBELL, program officer and study director JAMES ZUCCHETTO, board director CRISTELLEN BANKS, project assistant (until October 31, 1999) 1   National Academy of Engineering.

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs BOARD ON ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SYSTEMS ROBERT L. HIRSCH (chair), Advanced Power Technologies, Inc., Washington, D.C. RICHARD E. BALZHISER, NAE,1 Electric Power Research Institute, Inc. (retired), Menlo Park, California EVERETT H. BECKNER, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Albuquerque, New Mexico (until December 2, 1999) WILLIAM L. FISHER, NAE, University of Texas, Austin CHRISTOPHER FLAVIN, Worldwatch Institute, Washington, D.C. WILLIAM FULKERSON, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (retired) and University of Tennessee, Knoxville EDWIN E. KINTNER, NAE, GPU Nuclear Corporation (retired), Norwich, Vermont GERALD L. KULCINSKI, NAE, University of Wisconsin, Madison EDWARD S. RUBIN, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania JACK SIEGEL, Energy Resources International, Inc., Washington, D.C. ROBERT W. SHAW, JR., Aretê Corporation, Center Harbor, New Hampshire ROBERT SOCOLOW, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey K. ANNE STREET, consultant, Alexandria, Virginia KATHLEEN C. TAYLOR, NAE, General Motors Corporation, Warren, Michigan JACK WHITE, The Winslow Group, LLC, Fairfax, Virginia JOHN J. WISE, NAE, Mobil Research and Development Company (retired), Princeton, New Jersey Liaisons from the Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems RUTH M. DAVIS, NAE, Pymatuning Group, Inc., Alexandria, Virginia GAIL DE PLANQUE, NAE, consultant, Potomac, Maryland LAWRENCE T. PAPAY, NAE, Bechtel Technology and Consulting, San Francisco, California Staff JAMES ZUCCHETTO, director RICHARD CAMPBELL, program officer SUSANNA CLARENDON, financial associate CRISTELLYN BANKS, project assistant (until October 31, 1999) 1   National Academy of Engineering.

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs Acknowledgments The Committee on Programmatic Review of the U.S. Department of Energy' s (DOE's) Office of Power Technologies wishes to thank the many individuals who contributed significantly to this National Research Council (NRC) study. The presentations by representatives of DOE and the national laboratories, as well as a host of other organizations, provided the committee with valuable information and insights on DOE's Office of Power Technologies programs and the renewable energy technologies under development. These participants also participated in valuable discussions during question and answer sessions with the committee (see Appendix B for a list of presentations). The chairman also wishes to recognize the committee members and the staff of the NRC's Board on Energy and Environmental Systems for their hard work in organizing and planning committee meetings and their individual efforts in gathering information and writing sections of the report. The report has been reviewed by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the NRC Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the authors and the NRC in making the published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards of objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The content of the review comments and draft manuscript remains confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their participation in the review of this report: David Bodde, University of Missouri, Kansas City; Elisabeth Drake, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Seth Dunn, Worldwatch

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs Institute; John Kaslow, EPRI Consultants, Inc.; Karl Rábago, Rocky Mountain Institute; Maxine Savitz, Allied Signal, Inc.; Raymond Viskanta, Purdue University; and Carl Weinberg, Weinberg Associates. While these individuals provided constructive comments and suggestions, responsibility for the final content of this report rests solely with the authoring committee and the NRC.

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs Contents     EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   1 1   INTRODUCTION   10     Origin of the Study   11     Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy   11     Scope and Organization of the Report   11 2   ROLE OF RENEWABLE SOURCES OF ENERGY   13     Energy Research and Development   13     Government Support for Energy Research and Development   15     Budget for the Office of Power Technologies   17     Forces of Change   18     Evolution of Research on Renewable Energy   22     Strategic Rationale for the Office of Power Technologies' Programs   24     Conclusions from Recent Energy Studies   25     Comprehensive National Energy Strategy   25     References   26 3   ASSESSMENTS OF INDIVIDUAL PROGRAMS   28     Biopower Program   29     Hydrogen Research Program   38     Hydropower Program   44     Geothermal Energy Program   50     Concentrating Solar Power Program   57     Solar Photovoltaics Program   66

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs     Wind Energy Program   73     Crosscutting Programs   78     Restructuring of the Electric Utility Industry   79     Distributed Energy Resources   83     International Issues   88     References   89 4   OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF THE OFFICE OF POWER TECHNOLOGIES   92     General Findings   92     Recommendations for the Overall Program   99     APPENDIXES     A   Biographical Sketches of Committee Members   103 B   Committee Meetings and Activities   108 C   Summary of Recent Studies   113     ACRONYMS   123

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Renewable Power Pathways: A Review of the U.S. Department of Energy's Renewable Energy Programs TABLES AND FIGURES TABLES 2-1   Funding for Renewable Power Technology Programs   19 3-1   Long-Term Goals for Photovoltaic Technologies   66 3-2   State Funding for Renewable Energy Development and Deployment   81 FIGURES 2-1   Funding for renewable power technologies, FY95 to FY99   18 2-2   Funding for crosscutting programs, FY95 to FY99   20 3-1   Solar-trough system   58 3-2   Dish/engine system   59 3-3   Power-tower system   60

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