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The Research Development & Demonstration (RD&D) team at SoCalGas is excited to share updates on our latest projects, collaborations, and events. Read on to learn how our involvement in cutting-edge research and groundbreaking pilot projects support our mission to build America's Cleanest, Safest, and Most Innovative Energy Infrastructure company. 

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Project Spotlight

Mainspring Energy has developed a modular linear generator capable of providing dispatchable power using a variety of gaseous fuels, including natural gas, renewable natural gas (RNG), green ammonia, and green hydrogen. This project enabled SoCalGas to evaluate an early installation of our linear generator with an eye toward potentially purchasing it for applications at some of our sites.

Learn more about this project and other exciting projects from SoCalGas RD&D.

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Webinar Spotlight

Industrial Decarbonization – Priority Technical Spaces
We invite you to watch our webinar about technology priorities in industrial decarbonization. Speakers from Darcy Partners conducted a strategic analysis of technologies impacting industrial decarbonization and leveraged a variety of data sources to understand the impact of emergent industrial energy transition technologies. For several technological priority areas, Darcy explored early-stage companies working on these solutions and built out innovator comparisons identifying, the key innovators and how their solutions differ. We reviewed these findings and discussed synergies these technologies may have with a gas utility.  

Visit our YouTube channel* to listen to this discussion and more.

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Meet the RD&D Team

Ethan Simonoff is a technology development manager for the Low Carbon Resources team in the SoCalGas Research, Development and Demonstration (RD&D) group.  Ethan helps manage the team’s project portfolio, which includes more than two dozen RD&D projects in the field of renewable gas production (renewable natural gas and hydrogen) and CCUS (carbon capture, utilization and sequestration). These projects range from laboratory-scale proof-of-concepts/exploratory research to pre-commercial, pilot-scale demonstrations – with the goal of accelerating development towards commercialization/deployment. 

Ethan is excited about resource recovery and closing the loop on various waste streams that can be leveraged to produce energy, fuels, and/or products which simultaneously reduces the use of virgin resources and offsets fossil fuel demand. He is interested in how policies and regulations will evolve to handle long-term duration energy storage such, as power-to-gas-to-power systems. 

He holds a Ph.D. in chemistry from Caltech, where he worked on materials development for solar fuels research.

Get to know other talented individuals who make up the RD&D Team by visiting our
 Meet the Team webpage.


Press Releases

SoCalGas and Bloom Energy Powering Caltech with Innovative Campus Hydrogen Project

SoCalGas and Bloom Energy announced the powering of a portion of Caltech's grid with an innovative hydrogen project that demonstrates how hydrogen could potentially offer a strong solution for long-duration clean energy storage and dispatchable power generation.

Visit our newsroom to read more

Innovative Technology That Uses Solar Energy to Convert 100% Renewable Biogas to Hydrogen and Graphitic Carbon on Display During the United Nations' COP 28 Meeting in Dubai

SoCalGas announced that an innovative technology developed by UCLA researchers was on display at the 28th session of the Conference of Parties (COP 28) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The goal of the technology is to use renewable solar energy and biogas to produce hydrogen and high-quality cylindrical graphite through an environmentally sustainable process.

Visit our newsroom to read more.

Innovative Hybrid Direct Air Capture Technology Pilot Launches as Carbon Management Solutions Scale Up Across the U.S.

SoCalGas announced that after nearly two years of development, an innovative carbon removal technology called Hybrid Direct Air Capture (HDAC) is being brought online in Bakersfield, CA. This technology is being developed by Los Angeles-based startup Avnos, Inc., with a pilot project to demonstrate how the technology removes carbon dioxide from the air and generates water using only electricity. SoCalGas has also partnered with Avnos, Inc. on a larger pilot project designed to demonstrate how this technology could be scaled up 1,000% from its current iteration.

Visit our newsroom to read more.

RD&D In the News

Congratulations! – Matt Gregori recipient of SoCalGas' “Shape the Future” award.

Each year, as part of the enterprise wide D&I Summit, outstanding employees from across the Sempra family of companies are recognized with awards in four categories: D&I Champion Awards, Shape the Future Awards, Community Impact Awards, and new in 2023, to mark Sempra’s 25th anniversary – the D&I Legacy Award – offered to an Officer of the company.

As a technology development manager, Matt Gregori led the creation of the Research, Development & Demonstration Equity Engagement Roadmap. This document describes a multi-year vision for improving equity engagement within the SoCalGas RD&D program designed to maximize the likelihood that the benefits of new, clean energy technology positively and equitably impact all communities within California.

As part of the development process, Matt engaged with various public-facing groups within SoCalGas and presented the draft plan to several diverse Community-Based Organizations to get their feedback. The final roadmap was submitted to the CPUC Energy Division and circulated to several relevant service lists. 

Visit the link to learn more*.

SoCalGas RD&D portfolio company EvolOH was named "50 to watch" by Cleantech Group company.

EvolOH is an AEM electrolyzer technology developer targeting $1/kg green hydrogen. The goal of this project is to develop high-speed coating methods for anion exchange membrane (AEM) electrolyzer production to increase overall manufacturing speed and capacity.

Visit the link to learn more*.

SoCalGas RD&D alumni Oberon Fuels believes it has found a way to make propane a greener gas.

Oberon Fuels created an ultra-low carbon propane by capturing methane and converting it into dimethyl ether that’s low-carbon or carbon negative, which can reduce propane carbon footprint by up to 60% when adding it to propane.

Visit the link to learn more*.

SoCalGas RD&D sponsored Los STEMateros, a Boyle Heights S.T.E.M. Magnet High School’s team, to compete at the 2023 Horizon Hydrogen Grand Prix (H2GP) World Finals.

A team of students from Boyle Heights STEM Magnet High School built their own hydrogen-powered remote control racing car. They made it through the preliminary rounds in California and qualified to compete in Las Vegas against teams from over 20 countries. 

Visit the link to learn more*.

SoCalGas RD&D, Electrochaea, and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory are working to develop and test a single-stage electro-bioreactor to increase energy security and combat climate change.

The project's objective is to merge the two essential steps in methane production, namely electrolysis and methanation, into a single, streamlined process unit. This technology can enable both processes to seamlessly integrate within a single reactor, leading to increased energy efficiency and reduced CAPEX.

Visit the link to learn more*.

Recently Completed Projects

Read about all projects that were completed in the last quarter. 


Visit the RD&D Webpage for our Annual Report and other important resources.

Follow SoCalGas RD&D on LinkedIn* for the latest updates on upcoming webinars and exciting new projects.

Connect* with us on California Energy Commission’s Empower Innovation platform to accelerate your work and advance a clean economy for all.

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Please note this newsletter is provided for informational purposes only, and SoCalGas makes no express or implied warranty or commitment with respect to the subject matter of the proposal. Participation of SoCalGas in any funding related to the subject proposal will be at its discretion and contingent upon the continued funding of the SoCalGas RD&D program through its current General Rate Case and any requirements from the California Public Utilities Commission. The commitment of SoCalGas to provide any funding related to the subject proposal is also subject to finalization (to the mutual satisfaction of the parties) of all the terms and conditions of a legally binding agreement between the participants.

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