Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.

2018 ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit Day One Recap

March 14, 2018

Day one of the 2018 ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit is a wrap! ARPA-E Principal Deputy Director Dr. Chris Fall kicked off the Summit with opening remarks and Tuesday’s mainstage programming featured fireside chats with Norm Augustine and Jason Grumet, Dr. David Hart and Dr. G.P. “Bud” Peterson, and keynote addresses by Rear Admiral David J. Hahn, Chief of Naval Research and The Honorable Paul Dabbar, DOE Under Secretary for Science. 

 Augustine and Grumet

Fireside Chat with Norm Augustine, American Energy Innovation Council and Jason Grumet, Bipartisan Policy Center

Peterson and Grumet

Fireside Chat with Dr. G.P. “Bud” Peterson, President, Georgia Institute of Technology and David M. Hart, George Mason University and Senior Fellow, Information Technology and Innovation 


Chief of Naval Research Rear Admiral David Hahn


The Honorable Paul Dabbar, Under Secretary for Science, U.S. Department of Energy

A highlight of Tuesday’s panel sessions were the opening rounds of ARPA-E Program Director and Fellow “Fast Pitches” – rapid-paced succession of exciting current program concepts as well as some completely new, “out-of-the-box” ideas. Some of the Fast Pitch topics covered today were:

  • “No Brakes or Steering Wheel? Avoiding a future automotive energy dystopia”
  • “Will This be my Last (Manual) Fast Pitch? ML/AI Enhanced Energy Product/Service Development"
  • "Started From the Bottom now We're Here: From Synthetic Biology to Energy-relevant Materials"
  • "Plug and Fly: Getting Electric Aviation Up In The Sky"

 Fast Pitch

Dr. Joe Cornelius fast pitching on “"Bioenergy Moneyball"

The star of the Summit is the Technology Showcase, where nearly 300 exhibitors show the world the future of American energy innovation. This year’s Summit features six technology demonstrations by ARPA-E project teams —specialized events highlighting some of the agency’s most interesting projects. (We’ve developed this handy guide to make sure you don’t miss out on these groundbreaking technologies.)

Opening night of the Tech Showcase featured two tech demos:


The Next-Generation Internal Combustion Engine: Achates Power
Achates’ unique engine design uses six pistons in opposition to one another across three cylinders and doesn’t require spark plugs, instead igniting gasoline fuel through compression alone. Combined, these benefits lead to a gasoline engine that is potentially 50 percent more efficient than today’s gasoline engines with similar power and torque. Tonight, Summit attendees had the chance to see the engine in Achates’ new Ford F-150 test vehicle.


The High-Speed Scrap Metal Sorter: UHV Technologies
Part of ARPA-E’s METALS program, the UHV team has built a machine to sort different kinds of scrap metal using x-rays and a camera system. UHV’s technology enables cost effective, automated sorting domestically, so the recycled metals can easily be used for manufacturing in the United States. Today’s demo showcased their two-lane sorter with two types of scrap metal.