PNNL to receive $1 million investment for carbon fiber research - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

PNNL to receive $1 million investment for carbon fiber research

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WASHINGTON - As part of the Obama Administration's all-of-the-above energy strategy to reduce the United States' reliance on foreign oil and save drivers money at the pump, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced today seven new nationwide projects to accelerate the development and deployment of stronger and lighter materials for the next generation of American-made cars and trucks.

One of those projects will take place at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.  The Richland-based lab is receiving a $1 million investment to validate carbon fiber composite models.

The project announced today will help provide additional technologies and innovations that will enable manufacturers to continue to improve vehicle fuel efficiency beyond the regulated levels.

The Energy Information Administration estimates model year 2011 cars achieved record average fuel economy at 34.4 miles per gallon, representing a 2 percent increase over 2010 model year cars.