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Solar & Alternative Energy

ARPA-E offers fellowships to chart clean energy course

SPIE Newsroom
13 January 2010

In a meeting in Washington, DC with SPIE President Ralph James and CEO Eugene Arthurs, Arun Majumdar, Director of ARPA-E, reaffirmed the agency's sense of "fierce urgency" around identifying game-changing innovations for clean, efficient energy initiatives that serve U.S. R&D.

The agency is seeking candidates for a DOE Fellows Program for ARPA-E projects. Fellows will combine business understanding with technical expertise to help the agency create a strategic direction for its transformational energy technology research and development, and will help develop programs as well as engage in independent research.

Fellows will support ARPA-E's Program Directors in program creation, while also undertaking independent explorations of promising future research areas for the agency. Fellows will also engage with world class researchers and innovators to develop theses for high impact ARPA-E research program areas, prepare energy technology and economic analyses, and make recommendations to DOE senior management.

Program participants will be expected to have strong technical backgrounds and deep expertise in at least one energy technology related field. Senior Fellows should have more than three years of relevant work experience in energy innovation related fields, while Fellows will represent postdoctoral researchers and recent graduates with less than three years of work experience. Participants will be competitively selected from the best and the brightest up and coming researchers and entrepreneurs in the U.S. energy sector.

ARPA-E Fellow terms will not exceed two years. All ARPA-E Fellows and Senior Fellows are full-time federal employees paid at a competitive salary. Interested candidates should visit: http://arpa-e.energy.gov/JO.html to learn more.

ARPA-E (Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy) was created last year within the Department of Energy to act as a catalyst in transforming the nation's energy practices and resources, by developing more efficient energy usage, a clean domestic energy supply, and a smart energy infrastructure.

"The nation that successfully grows its economy with more efficient energy use, a clean domestic energy supply, and a smart energy infrastructure will lead the global economy of the 21st century," Majumdar said in a letter last month to the energy community. "ARPA-E was created to be a catalyst for such a transformation, and to do so with fierce urgency."

Majumdar told James and Arthurs on January 11 that dialogue among industry, financiers, venture capitalists, and the technical community will be important in developing new business models to meet ARPA-E goals. In October 2009, the agency sponsored a Novel Approaches to Direct Solar Fuels Workshop in the Washington, DC area.

The agency is accepting concept papers through 15 January for advanced research projects in three areas, in its second round of funding opportunities. Research areas are Innovative Materials and Processes for Advanced Carbon Capture Technologies, Batteries for Electrical Energy Storage in Transportation, and Electrofuels.