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The Energy Transition

Solving the global energy problem is considered the foremost challenge of the 21st century. In addition to research into renewable energy sources, batteries, fuel cells and hydrogen as an energy storage and transport mechanism, researchers at the Forschungszentrum Jülich are also working on a number of cross-disciplinary projects.

The large-scale project ‘Power-to-X’ addresses the storage and use of electrical energy generated from renewable sources, for example by converting it into chemical energy carriers, liquid fuels or basic compounds for the chemical industry. The project brings together science, industry, energy suppliers and citizens’ groups with the aim of finding large-scale storage solutions that can be implemented within ten years (IEK-9).


Efficient and cost-effective materials are the cornerstone of the Energy Transition. They make it possible to increase the efficiency of existing systems and form the basis for new, modern technologies. The Materials Synthesis and Processing division (IEK-1) is working on several projects, including MAXCOM (new materials for high operating temperatures ) and ProtOMem (Proton conducting membranes with optimised microstructure and improved transport properties for energy and H2 separation applications).

The technical changes required for the Energy Transition need certain lead times. The process and systems analysts at the Electrochemical Process Engineering division (IEK-3) model future renewable energy infrastructures and analyse trends in the electricity market and consumer behaviour in order to realistically estimate the costs and feasibility of potential approaches.

Researchers at the Systems Analysis and Technology Evaluation division (IEK-STE) are conducting studies on the impact of climate change and the Energy Transition on electricity grids, eg frequency fluctuations due to the feed-in of renewable energy or the effects of climate change on the yield of wind turbines.


Institute of Energy and Climate Research (IEK)
Material Synthesis and Processing (IEK-1)
Microstructure and Properties of Materials (IEK-2)
Techno-economic Systems Analysis (IEK-3)
Photovoltaics (IEK-5)
Fundamental Electrochemistry (IEK-9)
Energy Systems Engineering (IEK-10)
Systems Analysis and Technology Evaluation (IEK-STE)
Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg for Renewable Energy (IEK-11 / HI ERN)
Helmholtz-Institut Münster: Ionics in Energy Storage (IEK-12 / HI MS)
Modelling and Simulation of Materials in Energy Technology (IEK-13)
Electrochemical Process Engineering (IEK-14)
Central Institute of Engineering, Electronics and Analytics (ZEA)
Engineering and Technology (ZEA-1)