EPIXC will target the highest carbon emitting industrial sectors: iron and steel, chemicals, food & beverage, petroleum refining, forest products, and cement.

The industrial sector accounts for over 30 percent of the nation’s primary energy use and 30 percent of its GHG emissions. Process heating accounts for 63 percent of all energy use in manufacturing. Industrial process heat is largely generated by burning of fossil fuels, and as such it is currently the most significant contributor to industrial green house gas (GHG) emissions.

Our vision is to achieve a net-zero CO2 emissions for heating in the industrial sector using clean electricity with cost-effective, high-impact solutions created by our public-private partnership of scientists, engineers, and technology developers.


Michael Baldea
The University of Texas at Austin
[email protected]

Stacy Esposito
Arizona State University
[email protected]

Sridhar Seetharaman
Arizona State University
[email protected]

ASU to lead new DOE Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institute


The Institute will conduct innovative and impactful research, development, demonstration and deployment (RD&D) and work-force training on electrified heating technologies and their incorporation into industrial processes; operational research on deep process-grid integration; and validation and characterization on large-scale test beds. The approach will be cross-cutting, leveraging the team’s exceptionally broad expertise in (i) electrified heating technologies, (ii) process engineering in the key sectors, (iii) automation and controls, (iv) modeling and optimization of processes and clean electricity supply including digital twinning/emulation and (v) techno-economic, life cycle and supply-chain analysis.

Key Technology Challenges

The design and operation of manufacturing processes must be revised in an electric heating regime. Electrified heating may require novel and highly flexible process designs that can respond reliably to generation rate fluctuations by altering their operating levels and production rates. Nascent electric pathways for heat delivery (e.g., radiation, induction, plasma, resistance, microwave) require careful validation and scale-up. Electric heating must ultimately be brought to productivity parity with combustion heating for applications such as drying, melting, chemical reactions, and others, to ensure that the products exhibit similar or improved quality and performance when compared to those made by fossil fuel-based conventional processes. In many cases, electric heating pathways could revolutionize product quality and production economics.


The EPIXC innovation ecosystem is inclusive and offers industry and other key stakeholder constituency members affordable opportunities to participate actively and derive commensurate benefits. EPIXC offers industry partners a clear path to de-risking electrified heating technology, along with emission reductions, flexibility in energy usage and potentially new product lines, as well as a platform for training current and new employees. EPIXC provides unique test beds in chemical processing, iron & steel and paper & pulp, to evaluate electric-heating technologies at scale. The Institute will support its operations from membership fees, technology licensing, and private and public sector contract and grant RDD&D opportunities.

Workforce and education

Overcoming technical challenges and implementing the relevant solutions underscores a critical need to train and recruit the future manufacturing and installation workforce. EPIXC is a unique ecosystem for transforming industrial heating through innovative research, that will be complemented by transformative education and workforce development (EWD). The EPIXC EWD program will be comprehensive, aiming to integrate research (for PhD and MS students) and experiential learning opportunities (for undergraduate, associate degree students and continuing education learners), engage underrepresented groups including women and veterans, and provide a voice to disadvantaged communities seeking environmental justice.