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Institute of Engineering Thermodynamics
The Institute of Engineering Thermodynamics at the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt -DLR) in Stuttgart, with further research facilities in Cologne, Ulm, Oldenburg and Hamburg, does research in the field of efficient energy storage systems that conserve natural resources, and next generation energy conversion technologies with a staff of 270 scientific and technical employees, engineers and doctoral candidates. The spectrum of activities ranges from theoretical studies to laboratory work for basic research and to the operation of pilot plants. These experimental and theoretical studies are accompanied by systems analysis studies to analyse the associated technological, environmental and economic potential and situate it in a larger overall context of the energy economy by means of scenarios.
A tight network with the University of Stuttgart -especially with the Institute of Energy Storage- and with the Helmholtz Institute Ulm at the University of Ulm is existing.
22 November 2023: "Best Innovation Award" for HEAVEN
The EU project HEAVEN received the "Best Innovation Award" from the Clean Hydrogen Partnership. As part of the project, the DLR Institute of Technical Thermodynamics designed the propulsion system, including a tank for liquid hydrogen and the fuel cell system.
SEET 2024: Symposium on Electrochemical Energy Technology
20 March 2024 @DLR Stuttgart
Renewable energy sources are the key to the decarbonisation of society. New solutions are needed to bring together power generation, hydrogen and storage.The Symposium on Electrochemical Energy Technology (SEET) focuses on cutting-edge topics in the field of electrochemical energy technology - fuel cells - water electrolysis - rechargeable batteries. These technologies are considered key to the success of the energy transition based on renewable energies sources.
The specific topics are addressed from the perspective of industry and academia, thus providing a comprehensive view and strengthening the interaction between academia and industry.
Focus in 2024 – Reduction of Critical Materials
The functionality and performance of fuel cells, electrolyzers and batteries are highly dependent on critical raw materials (CRMs). Examples of CRMs are Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) or Rare Earth Elements (REEs). These are economically and strategically important for the European (and global) economy, but their supply is at high risk.
In addition, the EU is facing potential restrictions on per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances (PFAS). Circular methods and processes are needed, as well as the development of new materials and optimized designs that will increase durability, performance and reliability, while decreasing dependency on critical materials.
EMEA 2024: Workshop on Ion Exchange Membranes for Energy Applications
June 16th - 18th, 2024 in Bad Zwischenahn/Germany
Material developments and ion exchange membrane-based systems for energy applications will be discussed by representatives from research and industry with the focus set on anion exchange membranes. In addition to invited and contributed talks a poster exhibition offers scientists and especially young researchers and students the opportunity to present their work. A price for the best poster will be awarded. An opening presentation followed by a Get-together and the conference dinner will provide additional opportunities for lively scientific exchange in a familiar atmosphere.
4th International Workshop on Carnot Batteries
23-25 September 2024, Stuttgart
CALL FOR PAPERS IS OPENED!
The challenge of solving the energy storage issue is a significant one for our society. Integrating intermittent sources of electric power from renewable energies into the future energy infrastructure requires gigawatt-hour storage capacities. The cost-effective and site-independent storage of electrical energy at the scale of a large city's daily consumption is crucial for the integration of renewable energy into a sustainable future energy system. The isentropic energy storage system technology shows promise in addressing this challenge. Carnot batteries are a developing technology for cost-effective and location-independent storage of electric energy at a gigawatt-hour scale. Also known as Pumped Thermal Electricity Storage (PTES), Pumped Heat Electricity Storage (PHES), or Electro-Thermal Energy Storage (ETES), a Carnot Battery converts electricity into heat, stores the heat in low-cost storage media such as water or molten salt, and converts the heat back to electricity when needed. More economically and environmentally friendly than conventional batteries, Carnot Batteries have the potential to solve the global storage problem for renewable electricity.
Institute's Departements & Groups
Thermal process technology
The research area Thermal Energy Storage deals with issues of energy storage, heat management and heat transfer, which are important in all areas of energy use and energy supply. The overarching goal is to increase the efficiency of energy process engineering, as a key element in fuel saving and climate protection. The department's work includes the development of advanced concepts, components, processes and system technologies in the field of thermal and chemical energy storage, thermal management, as well as fuel treatment for applications in industrial process technology, combined heat and power, and conventional and solar thermal power plant technology.
Electrochemical Energy Technology
The research area Electrochemical Energy Storage focuses on the development of efficient electrochemical energy converters, primarily batteries, fuel cells and electrolysers, whose importance in future energy systems, both in stationary energy supply and in electromobility, is continuously increasing. Activities range from cell design, manufacturing processes and diagnostics to system optimization and demonstration. Scientific or technical challenges of electrochemical storage technology and energy conversion lie in overcoming the trade-offs between efficiency, operating time, comfort, safety and cost.
The research area of Energy Storage Simulation is concerned with improving the efficiency, longevity and costs of fuel cells and batteries. The prerequisite for this is a detailed understanding of the underlying physical, chemical and fluid mechanical processes. In the field of modeling and simulation, multi-scale and "multi-physics" models are developed and applied for this purpose. Special expertise is available in the areas of detailed electrochemical kinetics and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. Work is devoted to solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC), polymer membrane fuel cells (PEFC), and lithium-ion and lithium metal batteries (LIB).
The Energy Storage Integration research area conducts application-oriented research and is particularly concerned with innovative energy storage and energy conversion systems. The area focuses on the development of fuel cell systems for applications in aviation. The focus is on systems for commercial aircraft, such as emergency power generators and on-board energy systems ("more electric aircraft"), as well as propulsion systems for small aircraft ("all electric aircraft").
Flyer of the Institute
Institute's Status Report 2020
Jobs at the Institute
DLR-DAAD Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme Nr. 595: PhD materials science, engineering, or physics (f/m/x) - Advanced Electron Microscopy for electrochemical energy conversion devices
Chemist, physicis, engineer or similar (f/m/x) - Energy storage simulations with quantum computers
Student Process, Mechanical or Electrical Engineering or similar (f/m/x) - Hydrogen Production via Electrolysis
DLR-DAAD Doctoral Fellowship Nr. 628: Master materials, chemistry, chemical or similar (f/m/x) - Electrochemical analysis for molten salt storage systems
Student in process engineering, power engineering, electrical engineering or similar (f/m/x) - Development and experimental investigation of an induction heater design
University Stuttgart - Institute for Energy Storage
HIU - Helmholtz Institute Ulm
Hamburg’s Center of Applied Aeronautical Research
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