Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research
The Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research (NCESR), a collaboration between the Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), was established in April 2006 to conduct research on renewable energy sources, energy efficiency and energy conservation; and to expand economic opportunities and improve quality of life for Nebraska and the nation.
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[00:00:00.900]The center is a collaboration between
[00:00:03.470]the University of Nebraska at Lincoln
[00:00:05.180]and NPPD, Nebraska Public Power District.
[00:00:08.900]Essentially the center's mission is to
[00:00:12.500]solve energy science problems that bring benefit
[00:00:16.883]to the University, and to the state of Nebraska.
[00:00:21.030]Some of the work of the energy center has been
[00:00:22.970]work focused on biofuels, which are sustainable.
[00:00:26.690]This is very important for Nebraska,
[00:00:28.370]which is truly an agricultural state.
[00:00:31.030]We basically serve the rural Nebraska customers,
[00:00:33.870]and the work in biofuels and bioproducts
[00:00:36.430]has provided a significant economic benefit
[00:00:39.550]to our customers, the people that we try to serve.
[00:00:42.960]My group's ongoing research focuses on
[00:00:46.200]the role that microbes play in the environment
[00:00:49.180]in converting one chemical to another.
[00:00:52.740]Trying to understand how microorganisms
[00:00:56.402]can convert carbon dioxide into methane,
[00:01:00.550]and other organic compounds that can be bioproducts.
[00:01:04.830]So a direct benefit to Nebraska as a result
[00:01:08.210]is utilization of natural microorganisms that are
[00:01:11.950]just living in soils, in sediments, in water,
[00:01:14.920]and their ability to use that electricity to
[00:01:18.010]convert to something such as carbon dioxide
[00:01:21.290]into another product such as a biofuel.
[00:01:25.590]One of the great opportunities associated with
[00:01:27.810]the research center is to see our research educators
[00:01:32.326]take their students, help them get into the labs,
[00:01:36.170]and help them find careers that benefit not only
[00:01:39.040]themselves personally, but really
[00:01:41.060]the potential to benefit all Nebraskans.
[00:01:44.130]My group specifically does solar power.
[00:01:46.330]We were trying to build better, more efficient solar cells,
[00:01:47.163]which are highly sought after.
[00:01:51.930]And other groups could have been different,
[00:01:53.340]but if the energy center is funding these groups,
[00:01:55.390]and they're coming up with all these new,
[00:01:56.730]more efficient ways of generating power,
[00:01:59.100]which for the general public, that just means
[00:02:00.730]cheaper, more affordable electricity.
[00:02:02.950]Over the next five to 10 years,
[00:02:05.130]I would like to see the center continuing to
[00:02:08.770]fund successful seed projects that bring in
[00:02:12.290]external funding that contribute to
[00:02:15.100]the return on investment, and also continue to
[00:02:17.660]fund projects to benefit Nebraska, such as clean energy,
[00:02:22.170]carbon management, and biofuels and bioproducts.
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