Projects - Energy Center - Purdue University


Cummins Super Truck program

Purdue University is engaged with Cummins Inc. in a Department of Energy Super Truck program designed to improve heavy duty vehicle freight efficiency by 50 percent (ton-miles per gallon). Trucks and buses consume nearly 25 percent of petroleum used in surface transportation and Class 8 line haul trucks consume over two-thirds of fuel consumed by truck classes in the US. Essential elements of technology development include significant improvements in heavy duty engine efficiency and aerodynamic drag and reduction in auxiliary loads.

Contact Gregory Shaver, Mechanical Engineering,, 765-494-9342

Center for High Performance Building

The Center for High Performance Buildings (CHPB) at the Ray W. Herrick Laboratories was established in 2013 through a construction grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).  Its mission is to partner with industry to develop, demonstrate, and evaluate new technologies and analysis tools that can enable dramatic improvements in the performance of buildings in terms of energy, environmental impact, and occupant satisfaction and productivity. The CHPB is a multi-disciplinary effort involving researchers from Mechanical, Architectural, Electrical, and Computer Engineering and Psychological Sciences.

Contact James Braun, Mechanical Engineering,, 765-494-9157

The Duke Energy Academy at Purdue

The Energy Academy was launched as a pilot project in 2012 with financial support from the Duke Energy Foundation Indiana. It targets middle and high school teachers and students, with the goals of (1) inspiring teachers to communicate the importance of STEM and energy scholarship in their classrooms, and providing them with resources and incentives; and (2) inspiring students to enter the STEM pipeline and to consider energy-related fields in their educational and professional career goals. The Energy Academy is structured to stimulate thinking and problem solving learning, as well as to facilitate open discussion through tours, lectures, demonstrations, and hands-on activities. Some of the areas covered include energy generation, transmission, and distribution; efficiency; and energy entrepreneurship and innovation. These culminate in policy discussion, light entertainment activities, and project presentations made by student groups and teachers based, in part, on their lab experiences and web-based research.

The program, initially sponsored by the Duke Energy Foundation (Indiana) has been exceptionally successful, growing from two single-year projects of $20K and $66K in 2012 and 2013, respectively, to a new three-year commitment of $287K. Co-sponsorship of the Academy has grown to include Bowen Engineering, General Electric, Goldwind, Green Tech America, Kidwind Project, Nokero, Siemens, Tipmont REMC and Windstream Technologies. The Academy has directly impacted over 200 participants and at least 400 individuals indirectly. An assessment noted that: (1) 92% of teachers indicated that they gained knowledge that they would implement in their classrooms, and (2) 93 % of students indicated that they would enter a STEM related field in college.

Contact Pankaj Sharma, Energy Center, Discovery Park,, 765-496-7452

AstraZeneca Scholarship

AstraZeneca, a global, integrated biopharmaceutical company, provides graduate scholarships in mass spectrometry research to develop functional group-selective ion-molecule reactions for drug metabolite identification. The developed methodologies are directly relevant for analyses related to conversion of biomass to biofuels (for C3Bio). The development of automated systems for performing functional group-selective ion-molecule reactions will benefit both pharmaceuticals and biofuels fields. 

Contact Hilkka Kenttämaa, Chemistry,

Neste Oil Scholarship

Neste Oil, a Finnish petroleum company, supports graduate students to develop and employ mass spectrometry tools for the analysis of petroleum and petroleum products.

Contact Hilkka Kenttämaa, Chemistry,

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