Skip to Main Content U.S. Department of Energy
Energy and Environment,

Advanced Combustion Engine Research & Development

Enabling deployment of advanced and efficient technologies

researchers are are pursuing discovery science

Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory are pursuing discovery science that is underpinning the development of innovative catalyst materials, processes, and technologies to improve energy efficiency, provide alternative energy and feedstock sources, and reduce environmental impacts associated with production, transport and utilization of energy.

At PNNL, our catalyst research for emission control supports the nation's vision for more efficient and cleaner cars and trucks. Funded through the DOE's Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) Advanced Combustion Engine program, our emissions foundational research focuses on characterizing and predicting catalyst performance at the atomic- and micro-scales. By cooperating with industry partners our discoveries enable the deployment of advanced, efficient combustion technologies.

PNNL's foundational activities—executed as part of the Cross-Cut Lean Exhaust Emissions Reduction Simulations (CLEERS) working group—are intended to complement industrial activities by providing key kinetic and mechanistic details needed for predicting and improving catalytic device performance. These efforts are multi-organizational, co-led by PNNL and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which build on the strengths of each partner and leverage other DOE-funded activities. In contrast, PNNL's cooperative partnerships are task-focused efforts conducted with manufacturers and/or suppliers. The goal is to provide focused and coordinated research to address specific technological barriers to the deployment of advanced catalysts and devices.

PNNL has over 25 years of experience conducting catalyst research for exhaust emission control, with an array of patented technologies and over 100 peer-reviewed literature publications. Our catalyst research is conducted as part of the Institute for Integrated Catalysis (IIC). As the largest non-industrial catalysis R&D organization in the U.S., the IIC at PNNL is an internationally recognized center for catalyst research. Capabilities include the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)—a national scientific user facility located at PNNL—and with it, a world-class array of state-of-the-art catalyst synthesis, characterization, and testing facilities.

Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas


Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy



Featured Research

EED News