Associated Research Institutions

  Fraunhofer IME Building in Aachen Copyright: © RWTH Aachen

There is a  long history of collaboration in science and research between RWTH and its affiliated institutes and the Aachen Fraunhofer Institutes, especially when it comes to the transfer of research results into real-world applications. In  its internationally recognized Competence Centers, RWTH and the Helmholtz Association run multiple joint projects.


The present web pages provide an overview of various types of research institution that RWTH Aachen University traditionally has close ties with.

Affiliated Institutes
Affiliated Institutes are research institutions that are legally, financially and organizationally independent from RWTH Aachen. The specific details of the collaboration are set out in an agreements between the institute and the University. The status of Affiliated Institute is granted by the Rectorate of RWTH Aachen University.

Fraunhofer Institutes
The Aachen Fraunhofer Institutes are traditionally very closely linked to RWTH Aachen. The heads of the institutes also hold chairs at RWTH Aachen. As a result, research results are directly transferred into lecture content. In a joint effort, researchers from both institutions create the technology of tomorrow, develop products, and improve processes.

Helmholtz Collaborations
RWTH Aachen collaborates with the Helmholtz Association and various Helmholtz Centers on numerous projects. The Ernst Ruska Centre, for example, provides researchers from science and industry with access to the most powerful electron miscroscopes of our time. The so-called Virtual Institute is a funding instrument of the Helmholtz Association which is used by universities to establish internationally renowned centers of excellence in key research areas.

Johannes-Rau-Forschungsgemeinschaft e. V
The JRF is the research association of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia. The non-profit association was founded in 2014 as an umbrella organization for 15 state-supported, legally independent, non-university and non-profit research institutes.