$10.8 million has been given to the Energy Frontier Research Center for Solar Fuels of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Basic Energy Sciences. This grant will be used to work for energy research to produce more methods and resources for utilizing solar energy to produce fuels as efficiently as possible. This award is part of a $100 million each year from the DoE.

The UNC EFRC will use this grant to continue to create new means to producing solar fuels with the energy of the sun stored to be used at night or for longer periods of time. This will also build towards the center’s latest work known as the photoelectrosynthesis cell, which will be used for making and saving solar fuels for long extensions of time, with a reduced cost of natural materials.

In 2009, the center began with the help of a $17.5 million award over the course of five years, from the Department of Energy. There were only 46 Energy Frontier Research Centers upon the center’s establishment, which set the course going forward for academic research for energy solutions. Researchers, both student and faculty, work in conjunction to make significantly more progress in comparison to smaller groups.

The UNC EFRC is now working to create partnerships with other businesses that can use their research for various reliable consumer uses in technology that relies on solar energy.