Our research centers on evaluating and optimizing the performance of energy technologies, by combining the development of novel quantitative models and theory with the analysis of large datasets. We use this knowledge to set design targets that will help accelerate the development of technologies. This research focuses on electricity and transportation, with an emphasis on solar energy conversion, storage technologies and liquid fuels.
Storage technology optimization
Energy storage allows us to synchronize energy supply (whether from a renewable resource or a vehicle charging station) and energy demand.
Risks and scalability of new technologies
We are developing methods to assess the risks of existing and new technologies in terms of cost and other performance metrics, and how these risks might change in interesting and important ways with the scale of adoption.
Evaluating the dynamic environmental impacts of technologies
The impacts of technologies depend on various factors, including the background state of the environment.
Determinants of the rate of technological improvement
Energy and other technologies change dramatically over time at different rates.
- Zach Needell presents a poster at the MIT Transportation Showcase - 2/12/2014
- Prof. Trancik elected to the Science Steering Committee of the Santa Fe Institute (term beginning March 1, 2014) - 1/3/2014
- MIT News story on research on segmental climate policies - 12/16/13
- Paper published in Environmental Science & Technology: Effectiveness of a Segmental Approach to Climate Policy - 12/16/2013
- Interview with Energie Sensibili on innovation in energy technologies - 10/17/2013
- Research on energy patents featured in USA Today, The Hill, Climate Progress, and others - 10/12/2013
- Research on energy patents featured on Santa Fe Institute website - 10/10/2013
- MIT News story on energy patents research -10/10/2013
- Paper published in PLOS ONE: Determinants of the Pace of Global Innovation in Energy Technologies - 10/10/2013
- Nora Xu receives Eni-MIT Energy Fellowship - 9/1/2013