DOE Champions Lighter Manufacturing Materials to Save Energy

carThe University of Tennessee will lead the US Department of Energy’s new Manufacturing Innovation Institute for Advanced Composites.

Advanced composites are three times as strong and twice as light as the lightest commonly used metals, having the potential to transform clean energy products from wind turbines to next-generation passenger vehicles such as the 3-D printed Shelby Cobra electric vehicle (pictured). DOE hopes that by driving down costs for advanced composites and making them more accessible, manufacturers will be able to reinvent products that are at the foundation of a clean energy economy.

In 2014, DOE launched the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative at the new DOE Carbon Fiber Technology Facility in Oak Ridge, Tenn.– a manufacturing plant to reduce the cost of carbon fiber.

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