Coal research rooted in University of Kentucky history

Posted by ACCCE at 10:06 am, February 12, 2010

The University of Kentucky’s (UK) Center for Applied Energy Research has been conducting coal research for more than four decades.

In fact, when the Center was first established in 1972 – before the Arab Oil Embargo or the creation of the U.S. Department of Energy – Kentucky coal utilization was its major research initiative. Since then, the program has expanded to include other kinds of fossil fuels and renewable energy.

Today, the Center – a non-academic unit within the university – provides analytical services for energy organizations and is an in-house research facility for students and members of the UK faculty.

Director Rodney Andrews is optimistic and excited about the future of coal – and he knows that the young, talented minds at UK are, too.

In a piece for the Center’s academic journal, Energeia, he applauded graduate students and researchers for “working well beyond 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to push projects on carbon capture forward as quickly as possible,” and being “dedicated to fixing the problems with coal, rather than writing it off with a glib ‘we’ll just use solar.’”

Nothing demonstrates Andrews’ point more than the impressive list of fossil fuel projects at the Center. Right now, researchers, engineers, students and faculty members are working on clean coal innovations such as algae-based systems for CO2 mitigation, post-combustion carbon capture and scrubber technologies.

With this kind of dedication, I’m positive that UK will continue its longstanding tradition in coal research for many years to come. So, let the folks over at the University of Kentucky know that you appreciate their good work and fan them on Facebook.

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