Three industry-led teams that include Virginia Tech and four other major research universities have been awarded contracts to provide a range of research and engineering services to the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). The collective value of the three contracts is expected to exceed $465 million over a five-year period.

NETL, part of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) national laboratory system, conducts research in coal, natural gas, and oil technologies, and analyzes energy systems and international energy issues for the DOE Office of Fossil Energy, and performs contract and project management for a number of other DOE offices.

The consortium of universities, consisting of Carnegie Mellon University, Pennsylvania State University, University of Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia University, joined with a major industrial firm to pursue each of the three competitive awards. URS Corporation is the prime contractor on a program to provide fossil energy research and engineering services. Booz Allen Hamilton will manage work on energy sector planning and analysis and KeyLogic Systems, is the prime contractor for project execution and integration.

"I am pleased that the U.S. Department of Energy has awarded these funds to a consortium of universities including Virginia Tech, which will enable these universities to continue to perform outstanding research in the energy field. The DOE awards represent another significant step in the advancement of groundbreaking research which will benefit Virginia Tech and our region," said Congressman Rick Boucher (D-VA 9th District).

"Virginia Tech is a leading resource for research and policy initiatives related to sustainable, environmentally responsible, and secure energy on the world scene, so it is gratifying to be able to make these contributions so close to home," said Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger.

"Virginia Tech is strong in various areas of energy research, including carbon capture and sequestration, coal utilization, energy resources development, smart grids, bio-fuels, solar energy, and energy policies," said Roe-Hoan Yoon, the Virginia Tech faculty representative at the five-university consortium. "The three DOE contracts will give us opportunities to work cooperatively with the researchers of the other member universities, NETL, and the industry partners to develop new energy technologies at a changing time," said Yoon, who is the Nicholas T. Camicia Professor in the College of Engineering.

Over the past four years, three of the five participating universities have collectively performed more than $40 million in research services for NETL under the previous support services contract.

The teams and the work

The URS-led team will be responsible for providing personnel, facilities, equipment, materials, supplies, and services to support NETL on the development and implementation of basic and applied fossil energy research. The team will also work with NETL's research staff to provide research and infrastructure support; health and safety and quality control support; and logistical and technical coordination support.

"URS has a long history of supporting the DOE, including providing management services for four of the largest National Research Laboratories in the United States: the Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories," Tom Zarges, president of URS' Washington Division said. "We look forward to leveraging the diverse core competencies of the team to bring cost-effective services and leading expertise to the NETL's Office of Research and Development."

The Booz Allen Hamilton team will conduct energy sector analysis and planning for NETL including engineering analysis, research and development benefit analyses, life-cycle analysis, and energy resource development and impact assessment services. "We are delighted to bring the combined capabilities of Booz Allen and its core subcontractors (Midwest Research Institute, Technology and Management Services Inc., and WorleyParsons Group Inc.) and our university partners together to support energy analysis at NETL," said Booz Allen program manager, Gary Leatherman.

The KeyLogic team will support NETL's work in managing and reviewing the more than 1,800 projects currently awarded to external vendors and NETL in-house researchers. This team's activities will also include conducting validation assessments and project performance reviews, disseminating results to the technical community, and providing training in process improvement. "We are honored to support NETL and their mission to deliver technological solutions that simultaneously address our nation's three overarching energy issues: affordability, supply security, and environmental quality," said KeyLogic Program Manager Carey Butler.

Team leadership background

Headquartered in San Francisco with regional divisions, URS Corporation is a leading provider of engineering, construction, and technical services for public agencies and private sector companies around the world. The company offers a full range of services including program management; planning, design and engineering; systems engineering and technical assistance; construction and construction management; operations and maintenance; and decommissioning and closure services. URS provides services for power, infrastructure, industrial and commercial, and federal projects and programs.

Booz Allen Hamilton, based in McLean, Va., is a leading strategy and technology consulting firm that works with government agencies, corporations, institutions, and not-for-profit organizations on organization and strategy; economic and business analysis; supply chain and logistics; intelligence and operations analysis; information technology; systems engineering and integration; assurance and resilience; and modeling and simulation.

KeyLogic Systems is a management and information technology consulting firm headquartered in Morgantown, W.Va., serving federal and commercial clients throughout the nation. KeyLogic Systems provides professional services focused on program and project management, business intelligence, and portfolio management.

NETL background

NETL is a federally owned and operated laboratory that devotes the majority of its funding to research and development partnerships with industry, universities, and other government entities to support DOE's mission of advancing the national, economic, and energy security of the United States. On-site research is focused in the area of computational and basic sciences, energy system dynamics, geological and environmental systems, and material science. NETL's partnership programs in energy and environment will return benefits for generations to come.

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