In his State of the State Address, Gov. Jim Justice announced an agreement with Wyoming-based carbon technology company Ramaco Carbon to open a new research facility in West Virginia to pursue research related to the use of coal as the precursor for advanced carbon products and materials.

“I am excited beyond belief to welcome Ramaco Carbon’s next incredible research facility to our great state,” Gov. Justice said. “It’s a complete game-changer for us and, really, the entire country.”

This will be the second such coal research facility that Ramaco Carbon currently has under development, which are called iCAM centers (Carbon Advanced Materials). It will be located in Charleston. The first research center, located in Sheridan, Wyoming, is under construction and is scheduled to open this summer.

In recent years, Ramaco Carbon has also built a national network of research support at universities, scientific institutes, the Department of Energy’s National Labs and other government organizations. One of the company’s mantras is, “Coal is too valuable to burn.”

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced last September that Ramaco was the recipient or a sub-recipient of more than $5 million in new federal grants to support these efforts.

“We are excited about the transformative potential of these projects,” said Steven Winberg, DOE assistant secretary for fossil energy. “Advancing this coal R&D is paving the way for future technology innovation and integration.”

“The research that we will conduct in West Virginia has potentially far-reaching national economic and strategic implications,” Ramaco Carbon Chairman and CEO Randall Atkins said. “We are deeply appreciative of the governor’s vote of confidence in our contributions to these research efforts and we look forward to further cementing the Ramaco ‘family’ of coal interests in West Virginia.”