The strategic task of DLR’s Department of Solar Chemical Engineering is to study the conversion of solar radiation into fuels.
Our researchers develop suitable solar reactors and components, asses and optimize them on a system level and transfer the results to larger scales close to industrial size. The main focus of our research is clean hydrogen production. Hydrogen can be applied either directly as an energy carrier – e.g. in fuel cells – or as a precursor material for the production of carbon-based energy vectors, both gaseous and liquid.
Furthermore, the researchers exploit their know-how to develop solar high temperature processes for material production (e.g. aluminum recycling), solar water treatment, sea water desalination and synthesis of chemicals. A recent topic is the assessment of heat transfer fluids for solar thermal power plants.
Members of the Department of Solar Chemical Engineering are linked internationally, as they participate in the following working groups and organizations:
The topic solar fuels has continuously been gaining in importance over the past years. The Institute of Solar Research will therefore extend its activities in this field.
► Solar fuels
► Solar water treatment