WRI provides a highly diverse suite of specialized scientific and engineering expertise, intellectual property, and research and development equipment and facilities with emphasis in asphalt, biomass, hydrocarbon, and polymer resources for energy and material applications.
Sustainable Emerging Technologies (SET) is a team of dedicated scientists, engineers and technicians devoted to advancing technology development with a “safety first” culture to protect staff, projects, and facilities. The team specializes in advancing emerging technologies from bench scale through pilot scale studies for deployment at the commercial demonstration scale.
WRI’s Asphalt and Petroleum Technology (APT) group is a leader in asphalt, bitumen, petroleum, coal, and hydrocarbon research. The group has several decades of experience leading research projects at the federal and commercial level to characterize, diagnose and predict asphalt and heavy oil properties and performance, and thermal processing of heavy oils.
As APT has evolved over the decades, many new research initiatives were conceived and actualized to address current issues common to the paving, roofing, coal and petroleum industries through confidential commercial contract work, and also through WRI-led collaborative consortia. These initiatives have aimed, to tackle evolving and growing needs and challenges in the asphalt field such as reclaimed asphalt pavement and shingle recycling, polymer and plastics compatibility in asphalt, asphalt binder variability (fingerprinting, diagnosing and amending) related to field performance, refinery processes, additives, and oxidative aging, or in the refining or upstream fields such as heat exchanger fouling, waxes, asphaltene stability, coke formation, bitumen upgrading, asphaltene adsorption, mesophase formation for carbon fibers, and many other areas.
We apply a diverse portfolio of analytical and modeling tools that provide molecular, chemical and physical characterizations, including several unique patented tools, to intelligently guide development of precursor formulations for the next generation of advanced carbon materials, such as carbon fiber, carbon foams, graphene, carbon nanotubes, etc., including fabrication processing methods
Western Research Institute (WRI), located in Laramie, Wyoming, is a multi-million dollar, not-for-profit, research organization renowned for work in advanced energy systems, environmental technologies and highway materials research and technologies. Our broad perspectives and know-how in science, technology and real-world, on-the-ground conditions attract industrial partners from corporations, industry associations, government entities, and other research organizations. We advance client technologies from concept to bench scale through pilot testing and commercialization. With the Federal Highway Administration, WRI has conducted concentrated research that has supported breakthroughs in materials knowledge, leading to safer, longer-lasting roads. This, and a long record of successful development with the Department of Energy is experience we bring to bear to meet our clients’ needs