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Customer Focus. Exceptional People.
National Impact.

As PNNL's Energy & Environment organization, our mission is unique in its diversity, from discovering efficient sources for renewable energy to providing scientifically defensible solutions for legacy nuclear waste. Through grid modernization and hydropower research, to buildings and appliances, our wide-ranging research areas are creating a safer environment while moving new ideas from the bench to the market. We are dedicated to a cleaner future, restored environment, and a stronger economy.


  • Mining Uranium from Seawater

    Take the Heat, Cool the Glass

    Based on results from a recent PNNL study, the DOE now has strong evidence that the heating and cooling system at the Hanford Tank Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant will safely cool the radioactive waste glass produced at its Low-Activity Waste and High-Level Waste Vitrification Facilities. What's more, DOE may be able to boost glass production rates, which in turn could shorten the mission life of the multi-billion dollar plant.

  • Tom Brouns

    Tom Brouns named Fellow of Waste Management Symposia

    Tom Brouns, a senior manager and chemical engineer at PNNL, was recently honored with the title of Fellow of Waste Management Symposia. The symposia is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing education and opportunity on global radioactive waste management.

  • Mining Uranium from Seawater

    The world's oceans hold more than four billion tons of uranium—enough to meet global energy needs for the next 10,000 years. But for half a century researchers have tried to mine uranium from seawater with limited success—until now. A braid of polyethylene fibers developed by researchers from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and tested by PNNL has shown the capacity to hold 5.2 grams of uranium per kilogram of adsorbent in 49 days of natural seawater exposure.

  • 10 Ways We 'Walk the Sustainable Walk' at PNNL

    10 Ways We 'Walk the Sustainable Walk' at PNNL

    When it comes to sustainability, we don't just 'talk the talk.' By using our campus as a living laboratory to test innovative concepts, upgrading our assets, and promoting conservation behavior, we 'walk the walk.' Here are 10 things we're doing to help create a more economically, socially, and environmentally prosperous PNNL.

  • Inventor of the Year Named by PNNL

    Thallapally Presents Metal-Organic Framework Research

    Kudos to PNNL materials scientist Dr. Praveen K. Thallapally for being invited to present his research on metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) to the Department of Energy's Office of Nuclear Energy Advisory Committee (NEAC) Subcommittee on Fuel Cycle Technologies. He gave a 40-minute presentation titled "Metal Organic Frameworks for Removal of Xenon and Krypton from Nuclear Reprocessing Plants" April 6 in Washington, DC.

  • International Collaboration Studies Effects of Marine Renewable Energy Devices

    International Collaboration Studies Effects of Marine Renewable Energy Devices

    State of Science Report summarizes interactions of marine renewable energy devices with the marine environment, the animals that live there, and the habitats that support them. The report research was a collaboration led by the United States with 13 different nations.

  • International Collaboration Studies Effects of Marine Renewable Energy Devices

    Lithium Hoarding Behind Failure of Promising New Battery

    Through the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research, researchers at PNNL discovered how a salt used in the electrolyte plays a critical role in allowing lithium-sulfur batteries to hold a charge after more than 200 uses; this work offers needed design principles for creating long-lasting, high-capacity batteries.

Core Research Areas

We are organized into core research areas that align with customers' mission needs.

Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas

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