July 18, 2022
ORISE recently provided support for two separate DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) events—the DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Program Annual Merit Review (AMR) June 6-8, 2022, and the DOE Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) AMR June 21-24, 2022.
The DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Program conducts research and development (R&D) in hydrogen production, delivery, storage, and fuel cells, as well as activities in technology validation, manufacturing, systems analysis and integration, safety, codes and standards, and education. Its AMR this year was held virtually and U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm gave the opening remarks. Deputy Director for Energy Justice and Secretary’s Advisor on Equity Shalanda Baker also presented. During the event, 68 participants presented their projects and 165 posters were accessible through the virtual meeting software. There were nearly 2,000 unique logins from 42 different countries for the virtual event.
After the event, EERE Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies Office Project Manager Shawna McQueen sent this note to the ORISE team overseeing the Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program AMR:
“Thank you all so much for the hard work and planning in the months (and especially these last few intense weeks) leading up to the AMR! I really appreciate the spirit of collaboration and your dedication to getting things right!”
EERE’s Vehicle Technologies Office funds similar R&D projects related to efficient and sustainable transportation technologies aimed at improving energy efficiency and fuel economy. Its AMR was announced as a hybrid event this year and in order to ensure a seamless experience for all involved, ORISE conducted its own mock hybrid review several days prior on May 27, 2022. To conduct the test session, six ORISE staff members were on-site at the hotel, along with other support contractors, while seven other ORISE team members participated remotely. The team tested a variety of presentation types, both in-person and remotely, and worked with the audio/visual subcontractor to ensure things ran smoothly.
When it was time for the actual AMR, Deputy Secretary of Energy David Turk and Deputy Assistant EERE Secretary Kelley Speakes-Backman served as speakers. There were 14 ORISE staff members on-site to help support registration, technical session rooms, technology set-up, meeting planner assistance, and management of the overall review. An additional two ORISE staff members facilitated the online participants by providing assistance with the live Help Desk and to respond to any questions asked via the AMR mailbox. More than 490 attendees participated online and an estimated 649 attended in-person at the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C.
Afterwards, one Vehicle Technologies Office AMR attendee provided this feedback:
“My overall experience at the 2022 VTO AMR was exceptional. The ORISE staff were very helpful throughout the event and performed in an OUTSTANDING manner… The sound system and the virtual access with close[d]-caption[ing] feature worked extremely well. Lunch and review breaks were well coordinated and allowed plenty of time for social/collaborative interactions. Again, KUDOs to the organizers and executors of the 2022 VTO AMR!”
The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) asset that is dedicated to enabling critical scientific, research, and health initiatives of the department and its laboratory system by providing world class expertise in STEM workforce development, scientific and technical reviews, and the evaluation of radiation exposure and environmental contamination.
ORISE is managed by ORAU, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, for DOE’s Office of Science. The single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.osti.gov.