DOE's HPC4EI program helps Argonne steer manufacturers toward supercomputing

DOE's HPC4EI program awards funding to four new industry projects at Argonne

The HPC4EI program provides U.S. companies with access DOE computing power and expertise. As part of the latest round of funding, HPC4EI will support four collaborative projects at Argonne that aim to improve energy efficiency in manufacturing and materials development. (Image: Shutterstock/kittirat roekburi)

With four new HPC4EI projects, Argonne will use its supercomputing power and expertise to help U.S. companies improve energy efficiency in manufacturing and materials development.

Engineers and scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory were awarded nearly $1.2 million in funding through the DOE’s High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) program to support four manufacturing and materials development projects that have the potential to improve energy efficiency.

The HPC4EI program grants U.S. corporations access to the computing power and expertise of U.S. national laboratories to tackle complex energy issues that those companies would be unable or ill-equipped to address on their own.

Through a mix of complex simulations, deep data analysis, and artificial intelligence techniques, the projects aim to improve the efficiency of jet engines, reduce energy consumption in fiber manufacturing, improve the durability of pipes and develop new energy-efficient materials for the automotive and aerospace industries.

Some of these projects build on previous work in the HPC4EI program, while others are taking advantage of Argonne’s expertise in manufacturing and materials development, and, for the first time, the computing power available at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF).

As a leader in applying high performance computing to solve real-world problems, the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility works with companies large and small to harness simulation, data analysis, and machine learning to address critical industry challenges and, in turn, benefit society,” said David Martin, who manages industry partnerships for the ALCF. He has high hopes for the new HPC4EI projects, which have the potential to push both the science and the industries forward.

The latest round of funding for the HPC4EI program will support the following projects at Argonne:

Reducing energy consumption in fiber manufacturing

Working with 3M Co., Argonne will use HPC, fluid-dynamics simulations, and machine learning to minimize the energy used in the melt-blown fiber manufacturing process. This extremely energy intensive process is widely used by 3M to produce filters, fabrics, and insulation materials, as well as the N95 mask used for protection during the COVID-19 pandemic. By improving this manufacturing process, engineers might reduce the energy consumed by 20%, which could save the industry nearly 50 gigawatt hours per year. (Received $297,000 in funding.)

Improving the energy efficiency of jet engines

Argonne is once again partnering with Raytheon Technologies Research Center to use machine learning to improve the performance, design, and energy efficiency of gas turbine engines. This project will use complex modeling to better quantify the impact of manufacturing uncertainties on the energy efficiency of Raytheon’s jet engines. (Received $300,000 in funding.)

Modeling induction pipe bending to improve productivity

The Electric Power Research Institute, Inc., and the Shaw Group will work with Argonne to use state-of-the-art simulation tools to model the optimal way to bend pipes using induction technology. This process aims to avoid cracking, enhance the quality of the pipe and reduce the amount of energy used in the pipe manufacturing process. (Received $300,000 in funding.)

Designing high-temperature materials

Raytheon Technologies Research Center will also be working with Argonne to develop a new ultra high-temperature material for use in the aerospace industry. Using HPC, Argonne will help Raytheon design and fabricate a metal matrix composite that will be durable and strong enough to operate at the very high-temperatures needed for the next generation of energy-efficient jet engines. (Received $300,000 in funding.)

The HPC4EI program is funded by DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Advanced Manufacturing Office and the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management. More information on each of these projects and the HPC4EI program, can be found on the HPC4EI website

The ALCF is a DOE Office of Science User Facility, open to research, academia and industry. To learn how your company might work with Argonne, contact partners@​anl.​gov.

For details on ALCF industry partnerships, contact


The Argonne Leadership Computing Facility provides supercomputing capabilities to the scientific and engineering community to advance fundamental discovery and understanding in a broad range of disciplines. Supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Science, Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) program, the ALCF is one of two DOE Leadership Computing Facilities in the nation dedicated to open science.

Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://​ener​gy​.gov/​s​c​ience.

EEREs mission is to accelerate the research, development, demonstration, and deployment of technologies and solutions to equitably transition America to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions economy-wide by no later than 2050, and ensure the clean energy economy benefits all Americans, creating good paying jobs for the American people—especially workers and communities impacted by the energy transition and those historically underserved by the energy system and overburdened by pollution.