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Suggested Citation:"Attachment II Statement of Task." National Research Council. 2009. Letter Report on the Review of the Research Program of the FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership, Phase 3. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12711.
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Attachment II Statement of Task The National Academies’ National Research Council (NRC) Committee on Review of the Research Program of the FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership, Phase 3, will address the following tasks (Note: the interim letter report will address Task 6) : (1) Review the challenging high-level technical goals and timetables for government and industry R&D efforts, which address such areas as (a) integrated systems analysis; (b) fuel cell power systems; (c) hydrogen storage systems; (d) hydrogen production and distribution technologies necessary for the viability of hydrogen-fueled vehicles; (e) the technical basis for codes and standards; (f) electric propulsion systems; (g) electric energy storage technologies; (h) lightweight materials; and (i) advanced combustion and emission control systems for internal combustion engines (ICEs). (2) Review and evaluate progress and program directions since the Phase 1 and 2 reviews toward meeting the Partnership's technical goals, and examine ongoing research activities and their relevance to meeting the goals of the Partnership. (3) Examine and comment on the overall balance and adequacy of the research and development effort, and the rate of progress, in light of the technical objectives and schedules for each of the major technology areas. (4) Examine and comment, as necessary, on the appropriate role for federal involvement in the various technical areas under development, especially in light of activities ongoing in the private sector or in the states. (5) Examine and comment on the Partnership’s strategy for accomplishing its goals, especially in the context of ongoing developments in biofuels, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, electric vehicles, the recent enactment of legislation on corporate average fuel economy standards for light-duty vehicles, and possible legislation on carbon emissions. Other issues that the committee might address include (a) program management and organization; (b) the process for setting milestones, research directions, and making Go/No Go decisions; (c) collaborative activities needed to meet the program’s goals (e.g., among the various offices and programs in DOE, the U.S. Department of Transportation, USCAR, the fuels industry, electric power sector, universities, other parts of the private sector [such as venture capitalists], and others); and (d) other topics that the committee finds important to comment on related to the success of the program in meeting its technical goals. (6) As a first step in examining the Partnership’s strategy, and given the changes that may take place with the new Administration, the committee at its first full committee meeting will address potential changes in the program strategy and program structure. The committee will write a short interim letter report with suggestions and recommendations on program strategy and structure and aim to deliver it to the sponsor within 1 month after the meeting. The date of delivery of the letter report will be contingent on when the meeting is scheduled and timely input of information from the representatives of the Partnership. (7) Review and assess the actions that have been taken in response to recommendations from the NRC Phase 2 review of the Partnership. (8) Write a final report documenting its conclusions and recommendations. 17

Next: Attachment III Presentations and Discussions with Representatives of the Partnership at the Committee Meeting, April 27, 2009 »
Letter Report on the Review of the Research Program of the FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership, Phase 3 Get This Book
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This letter report broadly reviews the strategy and structure of the FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership, as requested by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Although the Obama Administration's focus on nearer-term technologies is on the right track, there remains a need for continued investment in longer-term, higher-risk, higher-payoff vehicle technologies that could be highly transformational with regard to reduced use of petroleum and reduced emissions. Such technologies include advanced batteries, technologies for hydrogen storage, and hydrogen/fuel cells. For researchers, contractors, and investors to be willing to make long-term commitments to these and other potentially important developing technologies, a consistent year-to-year level of support must be provided.

Other recommendations within this report include incorporating a broader-scope approach to better consider total emissions and the full environmental impact of using various fuels and technologies; providing temporary reductions in cost-share requirements to ease the burden on prospective researchers; and providing direct funding to struggling automotive companies to help keep important in-house research programs active. Further suggestions are included within the body of the report.

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