Advanced Coal Technology Consortium (ACTC) researchers from the U.S. and China developed annual work plans and identified promising collaborative opportunities for accelerating R&D at the ACTC Annual Meeting held from 12-15 September 2017 in Lexington, Kentucky. It was ACTC’s second joint Annual Meeting of CERC’s second phase.
Co-chaired by U.S. ACTC Director James Wood from West Virginia University and China ACTC Director Zheng Chuguang from Huangzhou University of Science and Technology, the meeting focused on developing upcoming year work plans, conducting technical working sessions, and generating new and mutually beneficial concepts and partnerships between the Chinese and U.S. researchers. Dr. Eli Capilouto, President of the University of Kentucky and Rocky Adkins, State Representative and Minority Leader of the Kentucky House of Representatives and former Chair of the Southern States Energy Board, offered introductory remarks, highlighting the significance of ACTC’s research to the Appalachian region and the US in general. Separate workshop sessions focused on both industry partnerships and technical research topics. The aim of these sessions was to streamline and better integrate the technical work among the researchers and industry. Dr. Talina Mathews, Commissioner of the Kentucky Public Service Commission, spoke to the group in a keynote address about the future of coal power against the backdrop of competing fuels, the cost of electricity, least cost utility regulation, and the role of technologies. Field tours to University of Kentucky’s Center for Applied Energy Research and Kentucky’s first megawatt-scale carbon capture pilot unit at Kentucky Utilities Company’s E.W. Brown Generating Station were offered to participants as an opportunity to learn firsthand about the types of advanced coal technologies coming out of ACTC’s research.