SHERIDAN, Wyo. —Ramaco Carbon, a coal technology company headquartered in Sheridan, announced today it had hired Christopher Yurchick to serve as director of research. Yurchick will manage research operations in both Sheridan and Charleston, West Virginia.
Coming to Ramaco with over a decade of experience working in joint academic/industrial ventures, and 15 years of prior experience in carbon science and intellectual property development, Yurchick will help spearhead the development of Ramaco’s research facilities, called iCAM centers, or “Carbon Advanced Materials” centers.
The first research center is now under construction in Sheridan and scheduled to open this summer. This month the governor of West Virginia, Jim Justice, announced a partnership with Ramaco regarding the creation of a second research facility in that state. That research facility is tentatively scheduled to open this spring.
“Our company is dedicated to building a Carbon Valley, where researchers can pioneer innovative and environmentally friendly ways to create valuable advanced products and materials from the carbon in coal,” said Randall Atkins, Ramaco Carbon’s chairman and CEO.
“Christopher is the perfect person to help us build this future, with an unparalleled combination of scientific prowess, management experience, and understanding of research commercialization and development. We’re expanding our vision of the Carbon Valley to both the East and the West and are very excited to work with Christopher in realizing it.”
In recent years, Ramaco Carbon has built a national network of research support at universities, scientific institutes, Department of Energy (DOE) National Labs and other government organizations to support the fast-evolving field of “coal-to-products.” The DOE announced last September that Ramaco was the recipient or a sub-recipient of over $5 million in new federal grants to support these efforts.
The company is also in its second year as the industry partner on a separate $5 million DOE-funded grant project in Wyoming nicknamed “Coal to Cars.” The project is aimed at using coal as a precursor to lower the cost of manufacturing carbon fiber for use in the automotive industry.
Ramaco is also now a partner with the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on a variety of joint coal to product research products.
“I am very excited to be working both directly with Ramaco, as well as with the larger research network that Ramaco has uniquely assembled across the country,” said Yurchick. “Ramaco is a company with the ideal vision to change the world of coal and carbon materials, and we look forward to building a new industry which converts the carbon in coal into a wide range of high-quality products.”
Yurchick noted that he could see carbon from coal enhancing numerous industries, including automotive and aerospace, electronics, building materials, batteries and medicine. He will divide his time between the Sheridan and Charleston research facilities, where research efforts will be focused initially on Ramaco’s work related to its current DOE grants, as well as work with partners such as NETL and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Ramaco Carbon is the nation’s first vertically integrated “coal technology” entity, combining coal resources, research and manufacturing under one platform. For more information visit www.ramacocarbon.com.