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BIL Clean Fuels & Products Shot: Supporting Carbon Utilization Products via Electrochemical Conversion and Refinery Retrofitting

Open Date:


Close Date:


Upcoming Milestones:

Eligible Recipients:

Program Purpose:

  • Energy Infrastructure

Reserved for Energy



Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM)

Funded by:

U.S. Department of Energy


This notice of intent (NOI) provides a high-level draft plan of DOE’s current vision for supporting carbon utilization products via R&D projects for engineering-scale electrochemical conversion and feasibility studies for refinery retrofits. Projects will include experimental and/or design and analytical efforts to illustrate the viability of technologies and address technical gaps. Projects are also expected to produce volumes of data that will be used as the basis for lifecycle and techno-economic analyses that can quantify the environmental impact and commercial viability of the technology.

DOE’s Carbon Conversion Program is developing technologies for large-scale conversion of CO2 into environmentally responsible, equitable, and economically valuable products. In this funding opportunity announcement (FOA), supported R&D will address carbon conversion challenges across multiple areas, including engineering-scale electrochemical conversion and refinery retrofits. R&D in electrochemical conversion will address the challenge of extending system durability to a point where further scale-up is warranted under future efforts. Feasibility studies of refinery retrofits will support pathways for the adaptation of refineries for carbon conversion technologies.

Technical Objectives:

The objectives of this FOA are expected to support R&D of engineering-scale electrochemical conversion pathways and feasibility studies for refinery retrofits. Proposed concepts should demonstrate lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions that are at least 10% (and preferably 25%) lower than equivalent incumbent products.

With regards to electrochemical conversion, the FOA will support engineering-scale R&D for electrochemical conversion of CO2 into value-added products with a specific focus on electrolyzer material set durability. Applicants should examine durability across the entire operational envelope using cell and stack tests and validate durability with at least one medium-term test (minimum 2000 hours).

With regards to refinery retrofits, the FOA will support feasibility studies for proposed retrofits of existing operating facilities, as well as model or sample facilities representative of operating facilities, including the retrofitting of petrochemical refineries. In the case of model facilities, feasibility studies must note determinant metrics such as capacity, geography, and end markets. Applications should describe existing components of the facility that can be repurposed for carbon oxide conversion, as well as describe what new equipment is required.

Applications under both topics will require a discussion of process inputs and outputs, listing of knowledge gaps and technical challenges, identification of target products and markets, as well as preliminary Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) and Techno-Economic Analysis (TEA) to quantify the environmental and economic benefits, respectively.

The two Areas of Interest (AOI) in this FOA are:

  • Area of Interest 1 (AOI 1): Engineering-Scale Testing of Electrochemical Systems for the Conversion CO2 into Value-Added Products. The objective of this area of interest is to support engineering-scale R&D for electrochemical conversion of CO2 into value-added products (minimum value of $1/kg) with a specific focus on electrolyzer material set durability. Value-added products of interest include but are not limited to; engineering polymer/resin precursors, specialty chemicals, and commodity chemicals with a minimum value of $1/kg.
  • Area of Interest 2 (AOI 2): Retrofitting of Refineries for Carbon Conversion. The objective of this area of interest is to support feasibility studies examining the retrofitting of refineries for carbon utilization and production of value-added products. It is anticipated that responses and results of these studies could inform follow-on funding opportunities to advance proposed retrofit or renovations for carbon conversion.

The anticipated award sizes are:

  • Electrochemical Conversion: $7.5 million (of which $1.5 million is the Applicant’s cost share)
  • Refinery Retrofits: $1.25 million (of which $250,000 is the Applicant’s cost share).

Awards will be structured as cooperative agreements.

Please note this is a preliminary FOA implementation plan and will likely evolve during the FOA development process. Guidance on specific application and reporting requirements will be included in the FOA, if issued. The resulting awards are envisioned to have a 24-month period of performance for engineering-scale electrochemical conversion projects, and an 18-month period of performance for refinery retrofitting feasibility studies. All projects will require a minimum 20% cost share commitment from the Applicants. DOE will not accept questions at this time regarding issuance of the FOA. Details on how to submit questions and comments will be provided in the FOA, if issued.

Related Resources

Additional information is available on the Resources page.

Funding Details

Funding Source:
Funding Type:
Grant - match required
Total Amount Available:
Limit per Applicant:
Estimated Awards:

Applicant Guidance

Contact Information

Ursula Drake, 412-386-9293, Ursula.Drake@netl.doe.gov

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