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Welcome to the South Central Sun Grant Regional Program!

Located on the campus of Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, OK, we are one of five Sun Grant Centers, all of whom are working together to further establish a biobased economy through our national network of land-grant universities and federally-funded laboratories. Originally authorized under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, the five Sun Grant Centers each use their unique regional resources to meet the common goal of researching biobased alternatives and providing educational programs on America’s energy demands while offering economic opportunities for rural areas.

Since 2006

the South Central Center has awarded over $7.5 million in US Department of Transportation (DOT) and $2.8 million in US Department of Agriculture (USDA) funds to land-grant university-based researchers within our eight-state region consisting of Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. Prior to the release of the first RFA in 2007, each of the Sun Grant Centers created a list of priority areas suitable to the resources and needs of their region. While the feedstocks vary greatly within the South Central region, projects funded through a competitive grants process all fit within the defined priority areas.

The South

Central Region

also participates in the US Department of Energy (DOE)-funded Sun Grant Feedstock Partnership, overseen by Dr. Vance Owens, Director of the North Central Sun Grant Center at South Dakota State University. The Feedstock Partnership has been charged by the DOE’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) with three tasks:  1. biomass resource assessment, 2. biomass resource development, and 3. biomass resource education and outreach. The Feedstock Partnership has assembled national task teams to complete these OMB tasks.

The 2018 Farm Bill

The 2018 Farm Bill provided the authorization to USDA in establishing the Sun Grant Program (SGP) through a competitive grant process. The existing five Centers formed a consortium to compete for the opportunity of continuing as the SGP. The consortium was awarded the 5-year, approximately $2.3 million per year program. Continuing the existing Centers’ practice, 75% of grant funds received will be used to provide competitive grants within each region that are multi-institutional and integrated, multistate research, extension, and education programs on technology development and technology implementation and address bioenergy, biomass, or bioproducts research priorities.

Sun Grant South Central Region Staff

Dr. Mari Chinn

Associate Director

Dr. Pamela Abit

Program Specialist

News & Events

USDA-NIFA Supports a Center Project to Develop Biomass-based Composite Materials for Solar Energy Storage

October 28, 2022

This project aims to develop and evaluate thermal energy storage materials that will store solar energy.

USDA Awards Grants to Six Regional Projects through South Central Region Sun Grant Program

March 11, 2021

U.S. Department of Agriculture-National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA) through South Central Region (SCR) Sun Grant Program awards grants up to $2.05 million for six 3-year regional projects that aimed at developing viable alternative biobased energy sources and products while enhancing economic opportunities in rural areas.

USDA-NIFA Grants a Center Project to Develop a Platform for Butanol Production via Co-fermentation of Lignocellulosic Biomass

November 24, 2020

The project aims is to develop a novel C. carboxidivorans based platform coupled with compatible process technology for producing butanol from switchgrass and fermentation gas.

Modeling and Analysis of the Logistical Challenge of Supplying Biomass for Biofuel and Biopower

March 2, 2020

The logistics challenge of using biomass feedstocks is huge with vast quantities of feedstock moved, stored and processed plus the need to accommodate production variation.

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