The signing of the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, claims to be the birth of the energy transition, which is already the largest insurmountable technical challenge facing humanity in advancing the 3rd millennium. While the finiteness of fossil fuels is becoming more apparent it is up to specialized and highly trained engineers in the next few decades to pave the way towards a sustainable energy supply of the future.
Since 2002 the research cluster Renewable Energies, together with his students exactly has been targeting this task. The development of a Biobased Economy is the central focus of the research activity. Priority areas include the supply of energy from biomass, increasing energy efficiency, optimized heating / cooling networks, conversion / processing of biomass to useful materials for the pharmaceutical and chemical industries.
To make a complex structure of biomass for energy and material use as efficiently as possible and accessible in consistent quality, the optimized storage to prevent loss of substance and basis transformations of the predominantly carbohydrate and lignin-based materials is researched in this area together with its drying, pelletizing and exploitation in the direction towards biochar.
The development of systems and equipment for the generation of electricity and heat from woody biomass is the goal of this research area. The focus is not only a decentralized, sustainable energy supply objective in mind, but also to maximize the efficiency and especially the flexibility of the raw material used.
Given the fact that internal combustion engines represent the backbone of current mobility solutions and play a significant role in the area of energy supply, the research division Engines & Emissions particularly addresses issues related to alternative fuels, internal combustion and technologies for the reduction of emissions.
Decentralized heating and cooling often becomes an economic and emissions related challenge. In opposite centralized systems can be operated with highest efficiency and minimum pollutant and CO2 emissions, but they need appropriate distribution and storage. Object of this research area is therefore the investigation and development of new distribution networks and storage systems at different temperature levels for different producer and consumer technologies.
Research areas at a glance
Research Areas at a glance