The future of numerous sectors of technology and industry hinges, directly or indirectly, on the development of powerful new energy storage systems. The coming generation of electric cars, for example, will require high-performance batteries. Likewise, stationary power storage facilities are needed to help cushion the variations in grid capacity that result from a reliance on fluctuating sources of renewable energy such as photovoltaic systems or wind turbines. Internationally, Germany already occupies a leading role in materials research and process development for energy storage systems. In working to devise innovative responses to social and ecological challenges and provide efficient, climate-conserving solutions, Fraunhofer ZESS will bolster this position. In so doing, the new Center will draw on the combined expertise of three Fraunhofer institutes and TU Braunschweig as well as profit from a well-established research infrastructure.
In the development and production of future energy storage devices, the Fraunhofer IST's main focus within the Center for Energy Storage and Systems ZESS is directed not only at energy-storage development and process engineering but also at the associated factory systems and life cycle management.
The Center's laboratories are located in the building of the Automotive Research Centre Niedersachsen (Niedersächsisches Forschungszentrum Fahrzeugtechnik NFF) of the Technische Universität Braunschweig and the offices in the Lilienthalhaus at the research airport in Braunschweig.