4.9 Million Euros for Urban Energy Lab 4.0

03/07/2018

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Rita Streblow

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RWTH begins building a new infrastructure for energy research.

 

RWTH Aachen has been granted funding for the interdisciplinary infrastructure project "Urban Energy Lab 4.0." The Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the European Fund for regional development are providing 4.9 million euros. The Urban Energy Lab 4.0 will create the experimental possibilities to significantly advance the research into the big questions of our day with respect to the energy transition.

Researchers from the E.ON Energy Research Center, the Center for Wind Power Drives, and the Institute of Energy Efficiency and Sustainable Building will be working together under the direction of Professor Dirk Müller from the Institute for Energy Efficient Buildings and Indoor Climate. They aim to create a highly interconnected infrastructure for drafting and analyzing new urban power supply concepts. After all, the urban energy systems of the future will be characterized by decentralized production, integrated energy, and the new opportunities created by digitalization. Planning, construction, and operation of separate parts will then have to meet the requirements that can only be guaranteed by constructional engineering, technical building services, network planning, and automation in interaction.

Flexible testing ground for controlled experiments

The research infrastructure is to be a flexible testing ground for controlled experiments, from researching energy supply to a certain region to studying an urban quarter's energy use. New technologies can be tested and sustainable solutions for a safe and environmentally sound energy supply can be developed. With the help of hardware-in-the-loop simulation, for instance, a city-sized energy supply system can be represented by complex simulations as a substitute. The project is unique in Germany, both in its scope and in its planned, flexible expandability, as well as its interdisciplinary structure.

Source: Press and Communications