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Department of Energy (DOE) Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs) is a basic research program funded by the Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES) that brings bring together creative, multidisciplinary, and multi-institutional team of scientific researchers to address the toughest grand scientific challenges at the forefront of fundamental energy science research. These centers provide the foundation for collaborative efforts that targets both discovery science and use-inspired basic research, and they aim to address priority research directions and opportunities identified by a series of BES workshop and roundtable reports. These centers take full advantage of powerful new tools for characterizing, understanding, modeling, and manipulating matter from atomic to macroscopic length scales. They also train the next-generation scientific workforce by attracting talented students and postdoctoral researchers interested in energy science.

Since its inception in 2009, there have been 104 centers across 41 states, including the District of Columbia. Biennial funding opportunities for 4-year awards started in 2014. The 2022 funding opportunity marks the 6th class of these Energy Frontier Research Centers awards, with a targeted competition in clean energy sciences, transformative manufacturing, microelectronics, polymer upcycling, carbon dioxide reduction, and quantum information science. The 2022 open competition resulted in 16 new four-year centers, 17 four-year renewal, and 10 two-year extension awards to existing centers. These centers will join the 8 continuing EFRCs awarded in 2020 that focus on environmental management, microelectronics, polymer upcycling, and quantum information science to make 51 active Energy Frontier Research Centers, each one with its own unique mission, to support the Department of Energy’s initiatives in advancing basic energy research across the United States.