Nav: Home

MIT and Eni extend energy collaboration

January 17, 2017

Following a stream of research successes in breakthrough technologies in the energy space, MIT President L. Rafael Reif and Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi met on Saturday, January 14, in Rome, Italy, to renew the nine-year collaboration between the Institute and the Italian energy company for another four years. The 20 million dollar agreement includes an extension of Eni's founding membership in the MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI) and research support for three of MITEI's Low-Carbon Energy Centers to advance key technologies for addressing climate change, in the areas of solar; energy storage; and carbon capture, utilization, and storage.

The Low-Carbon Energy Centers are a core element of MIT's Plan for Action on Climate Change, which calls for engagement with industry to address global climate challenges that demand society's urgent attention. Participation in the centers fits with Eni's commitment to an energy transition and addressing climate change.

"Addressing climate change and pursuing breakthrough technology research are priorities for Eni. The collaboration with MIT and other European and Italian universities is of paramount importance," said Claudio Descalzi, Eni's CEO. "Eni is strongly committed to pursue a strategy of energy transition. This is demonstrated by the challenging targets we have set for CO2 reduction. Since 2008, we have already reduced our direct emissions by 28 percent and we aim by 2025 at a reduction per produced barrel of 43 percent compared with the levels in 2014. MIT, the top academic institution worldwide for breakthrough innovation, is the ideal partner to address research in key technologies that can lead us towards an increasingly cleaner future."

"At MIT, we are determined to make a better world, and developing new low-carbon energy answers is an important step in that direction," said Reif. "Our researchers have the ingenuity to invent new materials, technologies, processes and policies. But for their work to reach the marketplace and make an impact on a global scale, we count on creative partnerships with visionary firms like Eni. We are inspired and grateful that Eni has chosen to sustain this productive collaboration."

Most of the results to date in the area of solar energy come from research conducted in the Eni-MIT Solar Frontiers Center, established in 2010 at MIT to develop fully competitive solar technologies. Among other achievements, the research has yielded the thinnest, lightest solar cells ever produced--which could be printed on surfaces ranging from fabric to paper, as well as new luminescent materials that could be applied to windows to harness solar power.

MIT and Eni have also worked with Italian university Politecnico di Milano to design and build a full-scale low-cost solar concentrator trough--an important demonstration project for commercializing future concentrated solar power technologies.

The MIT - Eni collaboration has also included development of wearable technologies and systems to improve safety in the workplace, environmental research that has led to new soil assessment methods--which have already been applied in field tests--and advanced modeling of reservoir and petroleum systems.

As part of the continuation of this successful collaboration, Eni and the MIT Energy Initiative have recently begun research programs focused on carbon capture and utilization, energy storage, and uses for natural gas resources that would otherwise be wasted with flaring--with the goal of finding low-cost and industrially scalable technological solutions.
About the MIT Energy Initiative:

The MIT Energy Initiative is MIT's hub for multidisciplinary energy research, education, and outreach. Through these three pillars, MITEI helps develop the technologies and solutions that will deliver clean, affordable, and plentiful sources of energy. Founded in 2006, MITEI's mission is to advance low- and no-carbon emissions solutions that will efficiently meet growing global energy needs while minimizing environmental impacts, dramatically reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and mitigating climate change. MITEI engages with industry and government through its Low-Carbon Energy Centers, comprehensive reports to inform decision makers, and other multi-stakeholder research initiatives. Additional information is available at

About Eni:

Eni is an integrated energy company employing more than 34.000 people in 69 countries. Eni engages in oil and natural gas exploration, field development, production, supply, trading and shipping of natural gas, LNG, electricity and fuels. Through refineries and chemical plants, Eni processes crude oil and other oil-based feedstock to produce fuels, lubricants and chemical products supplied to wholesalers, through retail networks or distributors. Eni's strategies, resource allocation processes and conduct of daily operations underpin the delivery of sustainable value to all of our stakeholders, respecting the countries where Eni operates and people who work for and with Eni. Integrity in business management, support the countries development, operational excellence in conducting operations, innovation in developing competitive solutions and renewable energy sources, inclusiveness of Eni's people and development of know-how and skills, integration of financial and non-financial issues in the company's plans and processes drive Eni in creating sustainable value. These elements lead to wise investment choices, prevention of risks and the achievement of strategic objectives in the short, medium and long term.

MIT Energy Initiative

Related Climate Change Articles:

Fairy-wrens change breeding habits to cope with climate change
Warmer temperatures linked to climate change are having a big impact on the breeding habits of one of Australia's most recognisable bird species, according to researchers at The Australian National University (ANU).
Believing in climate change doesn't mean you are preparing for climate change, study finds
Notre Dame researchers found that although coastal homeowners may perceive a worsening of climate change-related hazards, these attitudes are largely unrelated to a homeowner's expectations of actual home damage.
Older forests resist change -- climate change, that is
Older forests in eastern North America are less vulnerable to climate change than younger forests, particularly for carbon storage, timber production, and biodiversity, new research finds.
Could climate change cause infertility?
A number of plant and animal species could find it increasingly difficult to reproduce if climate change worsens and global temperatures become more extreme -- a stark warning highlighted by new scientific research.
Predicting climate change
Thomas Crowther, ETH Zurich identifies long-disappeared forests available for restoration across the world.
More Climate Change News and Climate Change Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Erasing The Stigma
Many of us either cope with mental illness or know someone who does. But we still have a hard time talking about it. This hour, TED speakers explore ways to push past — and even erase — the stigma. Guests include musician and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas Insel, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, anxiety and depression researcher Olivia Remes, and entrepreneur Sangu Delle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...