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You are here:  State-by-State Project Profiles > Kentucky

DOE Fossil Energy R&D Projects in Kentucky


Number of Projects

Total Value*
(Million $)

DOE Share
(Million $)

Job Benefits**

Coal & Power Projects





Oil & Gas Projects





*Includes DOE and private sector cost-sharing

**An average of 28.5 direct and indirect jobs per $1 million in R&D funding is used based on the Department of Commerce's Regional Input-Output Modeling System II formula.

University of Kentucky Partnering with DOE on Coal and Power Research
  • Improved Separation Process for Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis - Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis is an established process for producing hydrocarbons and other chemicals from coal and natural gas. Still, many barriers exist for Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis to become an economical alternative for the production of hydrocarbon fuels. Slurry-phase FT Synthesis is the preferred reaction medium, yet this method results in heavy wax products that must be separated from catalyst particles before being removed from the reactor system. The University of Kentucky Research Foundation, Lexington, KY, is developing an improved separation/filtration process that will drastically improve the economics of the Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis process by reducing catalyst losses. DOE is contributing $492,000 to this $655,500 project.
  • Carbon Nanotubes for Gas Sensing - The University of Kentucky Research Foundation, Lexington, KY is examining the feasibility of using vertically-aligned, multi-wall carbon nanotubes as a high temperature sensor material for fossil energy systems. DOE is contributing $200,000 to this $323,700 project.
  • Recovery of High-Quality Fuels and Products from Ash Ponds and Landfills - The University of Kentucky Research Foundation, Lexington, KY, is developing its Fuel FloatTM technology to recover high-quality fuels and carbon products from power plant ash ponds and landfills. About 10 percent of previously discarded wastes are actually high-quality carbon materials that could be recovered and recycled for commercial use in the power plant burner. This $1.17 million project is receiving $719,000 from DOE's Fossil Energy Program.

  • Cooperative Research for C1-Chemistry - The University of Kentucky Research Foundation is working on a $6.60 million project (DOE share: $5.26 million) that involves five universities (Kentucky, West Virginia, Utah, Pittsburgh and Auburn) collaborating on a basic research to develop novel C1-chemistry processes for the production of clean, high quality transportation fuel. The program has two principal objectives; to develop technology for conversion of C1-source materials (natural gas, synthesis gas, CO2/monoxide, and methanol) into clean, high efficiency transportation fuel and to develop processes for producing hydrogen from natural gas and other hydrocarbons.

  • Advanced Multi-Product Coal Utilization By-product Processing Plant - The University of Kentucky Research Foundation is working on a $8.98 million project (DOE share: $4.48 million) to design, construct and operate a near commercial scale coal by-product beneficiation facility at the LG&E Energy, Corp 2,200 MWe Ghent Power Plant in Ghent Kentucky. The demonstration facility will produce: (1) 156,000 tons per year of pozzolan; (2) 16,000 tons per year of compliant high grade lightweight aggregate; (3) 16,000 tons per year of graded fill sand; (4) 1,500 tons per year of high quality polymeric filler; and (5) 8,000 tons per year of recycled carbon fuel. Utilization of the by-products will eliminate the costs associated with the disposal of the ash.

  • Carbon Sequestration on Surface Mine Lands - University of Kentucky - Environmental and Materials Research (EMR), is working on a $1.48 million project (DOE share: $1.10 million) to demonstrate low compaction surface mine reclamation techniques for carbon sequestration through the production of high value trees. Three demonstration areas will be approximately 150-200 acres for a total of approximately 500 acres of new demonstration outdoor/classroom forests. The research effort will consider the importance of understanding both the effects of species and spoil type and handling on carbon sequestration.

  • Coalbed Methane Resource Assessment - The University of Kentucky Research Foundation is working on a $2.91 million study (DOE share: $1.45 million) that will obtain fundamental information on methane content, permeability, and well-completion data and techniques for Illinois Basin coal beds, and associated organic-rich shales. This study will provide essential baseline information necessary for the development and production of coalbed methane in the Illinois Basin.

Western Kentucky University Working to Control Power Plant Emissions
  • Environmental Control Technology Laboratory - The Western Kentucky University Research Foundation, Bowling Green, KY, will establish an Environmental Control Technology Laboratory using a circulating fluidized bed combustion system to analyze and monitor air pollutant emissions. The successful development of these technologies will provide scientific data for atmospheric pollutants resulting from combustion systems and the methodologies required to reduce the emission of these pollutants across the United States. DOE is contributing $2.0 million to this $2.54 million project.

 Page owner:  Fossil Energy Office of Communications
Page updated on: September 07, 2005 

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