Emerging Materials Technologies for Power Generation

Wednesday, September 15, 2021: 11:00 AM
Exhibit Halls 1-3 (America's Center)
Dr. James Ruud , General Electric Global Research, Delmar, NY
Advances in energy technologies are often dependent on enhanced performance of materials which enable high efficiency, long life, and cost-effective manufacturing of energy production systems. Structural materials integrated with environmental coatings are critical for efficient turbine designs that convert coal, petroleum, gas, nuclear and wind energy to electricity, and multilayered, functional materials are tailored for the direct conversion of sunlight or electrochemical potential to electricity.

Global electricity consumption doubled over the past thirty years and is expected to nearly double again over the next thirty with renewables leading the growth in generation and becoming the largest electricity source by 2050. With the continued growth and changing energy technology mix as a context, this talk will discuss challenges and opportunities for materials development for global power generation.

Special consideration will be given for the role of engineered materials to affect the environmental impact of energy production both in terms of reducing the impact of carbon-based technologies and of providing materials sustainability for alternative energy sources, including elemental supply and recycling. The role of advanced manufacturing and processing technologies such as additive manufacturing and advanced coatings, to enable new, efficient designs will be discussed. In addition, the talk will address the rapidly unfolding potential of digital technologies, such as integrated computational materials engineering, digital thread and artificial intelligence, for materials innovation, design and manufacturing.