E.ON ERC - Energy Research Center of RWTH Aachen UniversityCopyright: © Campus GmbH/Steindl
RWTH Aachen University
RWTH Aachen University as a technical university focuses on the entire chain of science, engineering and innovation. The main objective of science is to gain knowledge by taking samples, evolving ideas and creating concepts. However, the field of engineering creates applied concepts and products, which are accepted and used by society. These two divergent fields are brought together at the Integrated Interdisciplinary Institutes (I³) of RWTH Aachen University. The E.ON Energy Research Center (E.ON ERC), with its four institutes and close collaboration with JARA-Energy, is one of the first I³ and makes a decisive contribution to the development of innovative concepts.
The RWTH Campus Melaten covers an area of 473.000 m². The E.ON ERC’s main building, testing hall and “Modulbau” are located at the northern border of the campus. In the following years, a hotel as well as an education and qualification center shall be constructed in addition to the eleven topic-specific research clusters. The E.ON ERC is part of the cluster for sustainable energy, which was one of the first six clusters, and is led by Prof. De Doncker. One of the advantages of these research clusters is the rapid exchange of research topics and a close collaborative work with businesses, which are located in the area of the university.
The objective of the E.ON ERC in the RWTH Cluster for Sustainable Energy is the increase of energy efficiency as well as the transition to a sustainable energy production. One of the key methods lies in intelligent networking of various energy networks (electricity, gas, heat) from a decentralized supply system, which are known as smart grids (electricity). The research is, however, far more advanced. Resource-saving energy is attaining increased attention due to increasing demands as well as economic and social aspects. The research also focuses on technical disciplines like the development of new materials for thermal insulation in intelligent facades or new semiconductor devices for power conversion technology (power electronics). The holistic approach of the cluster includes interdisciplinary and multifaceted skills, which form the requirement for equally pragmatic and intelligent solutions for a sustainable energy supply.
Prof. De Doncker founded a BMBF Research Campus in Aachen together with 14 other RWTH institutes. This Research Campus is the “Flexible Elektrische Netze” (FEN) with three consortia: high, medium and low voltage, which is located on RWTH Aachen University Campus.