Sunday, October 1, 2023
Maritime Propulsion

August 8, 2023

FMD, ORNL Collaborate on Alternative Fuels Tech for DoD

Photo credit - ORNL - US Department of Energy

As alternative fuel engines start pushing into commercial sectors, the U.S. Department of Defense has taken notice, rationalizing that eventually, as alternative fuel grow in popularity, the diesel availability could drop while prices rise.

To that end, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Fairbanks Morse Defense (FMD) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to collaborate on the development and integration of alternative fuel technologies aimed at reducing the marine engine’s reliance on fossil fuels. Specifically, FMD will incorporate the research and development conducted at ORNL into its engine design technology.

Under the terms of the MOU, ORNL will leverage its research and development expertise, while FMD will contribute its power and propulsion design and manufacturing proficiency to promote the use of LLCFs in marine engines. FMD will define the performance and durability requirements and design testing components, while ORNL will provide research support in combustion strategies for LLCFs, high-temperature materials, additive manufacturing, elastomer compatibility, and corrosion.

Additional partnership intentions from the MOU include the following:

  • Collaborating on program development to identify and secure external research and development opportunities.
  • Establishing a single-cylinder research engine laboratory dedicated to exploring breakthroughs in areas such as safe fuel handling, LLCF combustion strategy, and experimental engine hardware configurations.
  • Supporting alternative fuel combustion development strategy through modeling studies that employ advanced analytics such as computational fluid dynamics simulations using high-performance computing resources.