(CLOSED) Large Wind Turbine Materials and Manufacturing (DE-FOA-0002960)

Sponsor Name: 
DOE - Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Description of the Award: 

This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is being issued by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) on behalf of the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO). The goals of this FOA are to:

  • Further develop broad, foundational, manufacturing platform technologies and address gaps and barriers that are currently limiting use of composite materials in clean energy and decarbonization-related applications with wind energy applications as the primary FOA focus;
  • Enable additive manufacturing processes for rapid prototyping, tooling, fabrication, and testing of large wind blades;
  • Apply additive manufacturing to non-blade wind turbine components; and
  • Mature nascent technologies, processes, and methods that improve one or more aspects of advanced composites manufacturing, including automation, and sustainability (including recycling) of these materials.

AMMTO supports innovative, advanced-manufacturing applied R&D projects that focus on specific, high-impact manufacturing technology and process challenges. AMMTO invests in foundational, energy-related, advanced manufacturing processes where energy costs are a determinant of competitive manufacturing and broadly applicable platform technologies that enable other systems and applications to be developed. The competitively selected projects from this FOA will focus on developing next-generation composites and additive manufacturing processes, materials, information, and sustainability technologies that reduce the levelized cost of wind energy (LCOE), and facilitate the transition of these emerging, cost-competitive energy technologies to domestic production.

Topic Areas

This FOA includes three topic areas, the first two focused on additive manufacturing of blade and non-blade wind turbine components, and the third on other materials, manufacturing, automation, information, and sustainability R&D opportunities.

  • Topic Area 1 Large Wind Blade Additive Manufacturing
    • This topic seeks projects that build on polymer-based AM research to date in support of more cost-effective large wind turbine blades. Polymer-based AM generally allows for rapid prototyping, tooling, fabrication, and testing while enabling novel designs and process configurations. This FOA topic targets polymer-based AM technologies that could be used effectively for blades with lengths exceeding those currently available in the U.S. market (of approximately 80m for onshore and 110m for offshore use), and that would also be applicable to OSW blades now under development (up to approximately 125m), within the 2030 timeframe.
  • Topic Area 2 Additive Manufacturing of Wind Turbine Components
    • This topic seeks innovative additive manufacturing solutions for lower-cost, higher performance non-blade wind turbine system components. The focus is on non-blade components that can be improved via AM processing and associated design and process innovation/integration. In particular this topic seeks proposals that leverage specific AM capabilities to advance the state of the art in the following application areas: a) novel AM materials and AM materials-processing solutions that meet stringent application demands for onshore and offshore wind components, b) generator and gearbox components with improved performance and/or reduced cost, (c) sub-scale validation of AM applications and design concepts that reduce the LCOE from OSW generators, (d) AM for large components such as towers/platforms using cost-effective materials such as concrete and bio-derived materials, and (e) AM approaches that provide advanced functionality such as thermal management, lightning protection or other non-structural functions. This topic does not target a specific material system and may include polymers, metals, ceramics, and composite systems.
  • Topic Area 3 Large Wind Blades – Advanced Manufacturing, Materials, and Sustainability
    • This FOA topic encompasses the following areas of interest (AOI’s):
      • Area of Interest 1 - Automation –This AOI builds on previous work on automated blade trimming and finishing33 by extending automation to any relevant wind blade manufacturing process. For example, automated quality control and nondestructive inspection could be demonstrated that will help reduce LCOE for onshore and offshore wind deployments.
      • Area of Interest 2 - Digitalization – Modeling and simulation can help achieve DOE’s OSW goals. This AOI seeks projects that address industry-relevant simulation, machine learning, and digital twin opportunities for enhancing manufacturing and reducing LCOE. For example, virtual factory simulation for onshore blades could be extended to reduce the CAPEX and OPEX for producing OSW blades, or machine learning could be used to expedite or enhance solutions in the areas covered by Topics 1 and 2.
      • Area of Interest 3 - Sustainability–This AOI seeks projects that address remaining recycling and materials challenges to wind blade sustainability, particularly those specific to OSW deployments such as impacts (if any) of exposure to harsh OSW marine environments on composites recycling processes now being piloted or that are in early stages of commercialization. These recycling processes include fiber recovery following pyrolysis, a promising commercial pyrolysis-based recycling process, along with an on-going recycling assessment. 
Sponsor Final Deadline: 
Mar 23, 2023
OSVPR Application or NOI Instructions: 

Interested applicants should upload the following documents in sequence in one PDF file (File name: [Last name]_DE-FOA00002960_2023) no later than 4:00 p.m. on the internal submission deadline:

1. Cover page (1 page, pdf):

  • Descriptive title of proposed activity
  • Specific Topic Area being addressed
  • PI name, departmental affiliations(s) and contact information
  • Co-PI's names and departmental affiliation(s)
  • Names of other key personnel
  • Participating institution(s)
  • Number and title of this funding opportunity

2. Project Description (no more than four pages, pdf) References must be included as footnotes or endnotes in a font size of 10 or larger. Footnotes, endnotes and figures must be within the four page limit. The project description should match the Technology Description described in section IV.C of the FOA.

Applicants are required to describe succinctly:

  • The proposed technology, including its basic operating principles and how it is unique and innovative;
  • The proposed technology’s target level of performance (applicants should provide technical data or other support to show how the proposed target could be met);
  • The current state-of-the-art in the relevant field and application, including key shortcomings, limitations, and challenges;
  • How the proposed technology will overcome the shortcomings, limitations, and challenges in the relevant field and application;
  • The potential impact that the proposed project would have on the relevant field and application;
  • How the proposed location of the proposed project will support technology development and long-term success;
  • The key technical risks/issues associated with the proposed technology development plan; and
  • The impact that EERE funding would have on the proposed project.

4. 2-page CV's of Investigators

Formatting Guidelines:

Font/size: Calibri (12 pt.)
Document margins: 1.0” (top, bottom, left and right)
Standard paper size (8 ½” x 11)

To be considered as a Penn State institutional nominee, please submit a notice of intent by the date provided directly below.
This limited submission is in downselect: 
Penn State may only submit a specific number of proposals to this funding opportunity. The number of NOIs received require that an internal competition take place, thus, a downselect process has commenced. No Penn State researchers may apply to this opportunity outside of this downselect process. To apply for this limited submission, please use this link:
OSVPR Downselect Deadline: 
Thursday, March 2, 2023 - 4:00pm
For help or questions: 

Questions concerning the limited submissions process may be submitted to limitedsubs@psu.edu.

Topic 1: Callie Zawaski (ARL); Topic 2: Sven Bilen (CoE); Topic 3: No Applicants, now available first come, first served. Contact LimitedSubs@psu.edu if interested.