Fossil Energy & Carbon Management

Combining research, development, and demonstration to enable national energy security and reduced carbon emissions

Sandia serves the nation and the world, addressing a spectrum of energy and national security challenges. Using science and technology derived from investments across all Sandia’s mission areas, our Fossil Energy and Carbon Management Program addresses the Department of Energy’s strategic vision to mitigate the environmental impacts of fossil fuel extraction and use, facilitating the transition to a low carbon energy future while maintaining energy security for the nation. 

In this domain, we emphasize carbon removal, capture, sequestration, as well as monitoring above and below the surface to ensure reduced emissions and minimize the carbon load in the atmosphere. Sandia develops direct access and remote sensing tools to characterize, utilize, and monitor the shallow to deep subsurface. We ensure that current energy supplies are stored safely—including serving as the primary science advisor to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and providing expertise to related challenges in hydrogen subsurface storage. We seek to protect water supplies and to ensure a portion of our nation’s critical mineral supplies are extracted from carbon-based sources. We seek out and mitigate potential issues with the surface and subsurface infrastructure to safely explore, recover, transport, and store fuels and ensure resource sustainability.

Sandia’s solutions draw on world‐leading capabilities in geomechanical testing from nano- to macroscales, subsurface access and sensing, microsystems, electromagnetic‐seismic‐infrasound sensing and interpretation, robotics and downhole tools, chemical separation and material science, data structures, exascale computing, and risk-based decision making.

This spectrum of research in fossil energy and carbon management supports energy independence, reduces the environmental impacts of energy production, lowers greenhouse gas emissions, and supports the transition to a net-zero energy economy. We apply the same science and technology to enhance environmental safety, defense, intelligence, nuclear weapons, nonproliferation, disaster response, and climate security and to help the United States prepare for and respond to national emergencies.


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Sandia National Laboratories’ fossil energy programs partner with large and small businesses, universities, and government agencies. With multiple agreement types to select from, partners can access world-class science, engineering, experts, and infrastructure.


Erik Webb