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book coverReview of the Research Program of the FreedomCAR and Fuel PartnershipFirst Report   (BEES)
Released 2005-10-26

The FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership is a collaborative effort among the Department of Energy (DOE), the U.S. Council for Automotive Research (USCAR), and five major energy companies to manage research that will enable the vision of "a clean and sustainable transportation energy future." It envisions a transition from more efficient internal combustion engines (ICEs), to advanced ICE hybrid electric vehicles, to enabling a private-sector decision by 2015 on hydrogen-fueled vehicle development. This report, which builds on an earlier NRC report, The Hydrogen Economy: Opportunities, Costs, Barriers, and R&D Needs, presents an evaluation of the Partnership’s research efforts on hydrogen-fueled transportation systems, and provides findings and recommendations about technical directions, strategies, funding, and management.

Report in Brief
book coverMeasuring Performance and Benchmarking Project Management at the Department of Energy   (BICE)
Released 2005-08-01

In 1997, Congress, in the conference report, H.R. 105-271, to the FY1998 Energy and Water Development Appropriation Bill, directed the NRC to carry out a series of assessments of project management at the Department of Energy (DOE). The final report in that series noted that DOE lacked an objective set of measures for assessing project management quality. The department set up a committee to develop performance measures and benchmarking procedures and asked the NRC for assistance in this effort. This report presents information and guidance for use as a first step toward development of a viable methodology to suit DOE’s needs. It provides a number of possible performance measures, an analysis of the benchmarking process, and a description ways to implement the measures and benchmarking process.

book coverDecreasing Energy Intensity in ManufacturingAssessing the Strategies and Future Directions of the Industrial Technologies Program   (BMED)
Released 2005-04-04

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has supported the Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) for more than a decade. This program supports R&D into energy efficiency technologies designed to decrease the energy intensity of the U.S. industrial sector. The focus in on seven energy-intensive industries—aluminum, chemicals, forest products, glass, metal casting, mining, and steel—known as the Industries of the Future (IOF). DOE asked the NRC for a review of this program including an evaluation of the ITP strategic plan, an evaluation of the technical quality of individual subprogram plans, and the prospective value of the multi-year program plan. This report presents the results of that review. It contains an assessment of the ITP strategy, of how effective it is being implemented, and the likelihood of achieving program goals. It also provides conclusions about the quality of the subprograms and recommendations about how to strengthen the subprograms and the overall program.

Report in Brief
book coverProspective Evaluation of Applied Energy Research and Development at DOE (Phase One)A First Look Forward   (BEES)
Released 2005-06-27

In 2001, the National Research Council (NRC) completed a congressionally mandated assessment of the benefits and costs of DOE’s fossil energy and energy efficiency R&D programs, Energy Research at DOE: Was It Worth It? The Congress followed this retrospective study by directing DOE to request the NRC to develop a methodology for assessing prospective benefits. The first phase of this project—development of the methodology—began in December 2003. Phase two will make the methodology more robust and explore related issues, and subsequent phases will apply the methodology to review the prospective benefits of different DOE fossil energy and energy efficiency R&D programs. In developing this project, three considerations were particularly important. First, the study should adapt the work of the retrospective study. Second, the project should develop a methodology that provides a rigorous calculation of benefits and risks, and a practical and consistent process for its application. Third, the methodology should be transparent, should not require extensive resources for implementation, and should produce easily understood results. This report presents the results of phase one. It focuses on adaptation of the retrospective methodology to a prospective context.

Report in Brief