ExxonMobil renews support for MIT Energy Initiative's low-carbon research

ExxonMobil renews support for MIT Energy Initiative's low-carbon research
Published: 21 October 2019 - 7 a.m.
By: Martin Menachery
ExxonMobil said it extended its support of the MIT Energy Initiative’s (MITEI) low-carbon energy research and education mission by renewing its status as a founding member for another five years. ExxonMobil first signed on as a member of the initiative in 2014.

This collaboration between academia and industry has benefited research in areas including solar, mobility and carbon capture, utilisation and storage,” says MITEI director Robert C Armstrong. “We look forward to ExxonMobil’s continued support of the innovative low-carbon energy research at MIT as we continue working toward a decarbonised future.”

“ExxonMobil has been supporting MITEI researchers over the last five years to help develop breakthrough solutions that can make a difference in emissions reduction,” said Vijay Swarup, vice president of research and development for ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company. “This agreement is another example of our continued focus to evaluate and expand our portfolio of affordable, scalable ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and address the risk of climate change.

With its renewed membership, ExxonMobil will expand its participation in MITEI’s Low-Carbon Energy Centers. The company will: (i) extend its membership in MITEI’s Center for Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage; (ii) join MITEI’s Center for Energy Storage, which seeks to develop new energy storage technologies for use in renewables-heavy electric power systems, electricity-powered transportation, and other applications; and (iii) join MITEI’s Mobility Systems Center, its newest Low-Carbon Energy Center.

The company’s membership in the Mobility Systems Center builds on its participation as a sponsor of MITEI’s Mobility of the Future study, which will be published this fall. The study – part of MIT’s five-year Plan for Action on Climate Change – examines how the complex interactions between advanced drivetrain options, alternative fuels, refuelling infrastructure, consumer choice, vehicle automation and government policy will shape the future for personal mobility.

Among MITEI projects supported by ExxonMobil is a new multi-level energy assessment tool, the Sustainable Energy System Analysis Modelling Environment, which assesses lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions from various energy sectors. Other ExxonMobil-supported MITEI research over the company’s tenure as a founding member includes an assessment of the future role for carbon capture and storage technology in a portfolio of climate mitigation options and a project that models the lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions of solar power and demonstrates its low carbon intensity.

ExxonMobil will also continue to support energy education through MITEI’s undergraduate and graduate programmes, including the Energy Fellows Program, which enables graduate students to engage in research in low-carbon energy areas of their choice prepares them for careers addressing energy and climate challenges.

The dual challenge of rising energy demand and climate change requires a sophisticated understanding of the systems in which zero-carbon, or low-carbon technologies will have to be integrated,” says Louis Carranza, associate director of MITEI. “Our industry members have that, as well as necessary experience delivering solutions at scale, both of which are vital to decarbonising the energy system.”

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