Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE


Photovoltaic technology is an essential component to transform today’s carbon-based energy system into one with its foundations in renewable and sustainable energy sources.

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Solar Thermal Technology

For the transformation of the thermal energy systems, solar thermal energy is a central component alongside energy efficiency.

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Building Energy Technology

More than 40 % of the end energy demand in most industrial countries is caused by the building sector, thus it has a major role to play in reaching the targets for climate protection.

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Hydrogen Technologies

Hydrogen, produced by electrolysis using electricity from renewable energy sources, can be used according to need across many sectors for a variety of applications; for example, in the sustainable mobility sector for fuel cell vehicles, etc.

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Energy System Technology

Energy system technology, which optimizes the interaction between generators, consumers and their control and addresses the management of energy distribution and storage, is one of the most important areas needing work for the energy transformation.

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R&D for Energy Transition

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE creates the technological foundations for supplying energy efficiently and on an environmentally sound basis in industrialized, threshold and developing countries. With its research focusing on energy conversion, energy efficiency, energy distribution and energy storage, it contributes to the broad application of new technology.

Fraunhofer ISE develops materials, components, systems and processes in five business areas. In addition to its R&D, the institute offers testing and certification procedures. Furthermore, it features an excellent laboratory infrastructure and is certified according to the quality management standard, DIN EN ISO 9001:2008. Founded in 1981, Fraunhofer ISE, with a staff of 1200, is the largest solar research institute in Europe.

Current Press Releases


Press Release #23 / 11.10.2018

Chillventa 2018: Fraunhofer ISE Puts Focus on Heat Pumps

At the Chillventa, the international trade fair for cooling, air-conditioning, ventilation and heat pumps, the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE focuses on the potential and the current challenges facing heat pumps in a special presentation.


Press Release #22 / 21.9.2018

Fraunhofer ISE with over 60 Contributions at the European PV Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition

Europe is leading worldwide in PV research and development as demonstrated by the 35th European PV Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition EU PVSEC, held this year in Brussels from 24-28 September 2018. 


Press Release #20 / 4.9.2018

Artificial Intelligence Used to Economically and Energetically Control Heating Systems

Fraunhofer ISE developed self-learning artificial neural networks (ANN) for controlling solar thermal heating systems in the project “ANNsolar – Neural Networks for the Use in Solar Thermal Systems.”


Press Release #19 / 10.7.2018

Photovoltaic Technology Evaluation Center PV-TEC Reopens as an Innovation Platform for the PV Industry

After a fire badly damaged the facility last year, the Fraunhofer ISE Photovoltaic Technology Evaluation Center PV-TEC was officially reopened on July 9, 2018.

News and Events


Sustaining Photovoltaics Production in Europe – Becquerel Prize Recipients Appeal to Decision Makers

Over the past decades, the renewable generation of electricity by photovoltaic solar energy (PV) has come down in costs dramatically and is now economically competitive with conventional generation using fossil fuels or nuclear reactors in an increasing number of markets. Convinced that solar electricity will play a dominant role in the energy supply of 2050 and given the leading role held by European research institutes in the development of PV technology, awardees of the Becquerel Prize collectively drew up a resolution. At the largest European photovoltaic conference, the 35th EU PVSEC in Brussels, the award-winning European scientists collectively expressed their concern that the European photovoltaic industry is threatened to be lost due to the strong competition from Asia. In particular, this pertains to the cell and module production, which makes up a large part of the value chain. This loss presents a strategic risk to the future electricity supply of Europe.
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Workshop on PV Module Reliability

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE and the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, invite to the 2018 SOPHIA workshop »PV Module Reliability« from September 4 to 5 in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The workshop will feature reliability aspects in connection with new challenges imposed by novel components of PV modules, presently observed failure modes and the further development of suitable test cycles towards service life testing. The workshop will be embedded in a EUROREG workshop which is intended to provide a forum of global trends and current challenges on photovoltaics and nanophotonics in the fields of research, industry and market.
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High Solar Power Production Ensures Stable Electricity Supply

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE reported that solar power production in Germany reached an all-time record of 6.7 TWh in July 2018. The installed photovoltaic capacity in Germany generated 15.1 % of the total electricity production in July, ahead of nuclear power (13.8 %). During the present heat wave, nuclear and coal plants are operating at reduced capacity in order to limit the amount of cooling water flowing into surrounding rivers and thus rising water temperatures. In this case, photovoltaic power fulfills an important grid-stabilizing function.
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Fraunhofer and the University of Freiburg are Reinforceing their Cooperation in Continuing Education

The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and the Freiburg Academy of Continuing Education (FRAUW) at the University of Freiburg are offering a joint master’s degree prgram for continuing education and three certificate programs in the areas of public safety, energy and sustainability. This cooperation between the Fraunhfer-Gesellschaft and the University of Freiburg has now been solidified and permanently strengthened through a master agreement. The partners are able to pursue their joint goal of supporting continuing education and developing new skill sets through this initiative. The agreement has been signed on July 31, 2018. Along with FRAUW and the Fraunofer Academy, other partners include the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE and the Fraunhofer Institute for High-Speed Dynamics, Ernst-Mach-Institut, EMI.
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Nuremberg, Germany / 10/16/2018 - 10/18/2018

glasstec - International Trade Fair for Glass Production - Processing - Products

Düsseldorf, Germany / 10/23/2018 - 10/26/2018

VDE Tec Summit

Berlin, Germany / 11/20/2018 - 11/21/2018

MRS Fall Meeting & Exhibit

Boston, USA / 11/25/2018 - 11/30/2018


Scientific Blog of Fraunhofer ISE


We want to share our expertise with you. The scientific blog of Fraunhofer ISE  »Innovation4E« offers a platform for information and exchange.

New Articles on Innovation4E:


Worldwide innovation: A venetian blind that supplies solar thermal energy

A newly developed solar thermal venetian blind uses the heat generated by solar radiation and feeds it via heat pipes to the hot water storage tank of the building. … When you think of solar thermal energy, you think of “black rectangles on the roof”. To date, this has been one barrier to the widespread [...]
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Building bridges between India and Germany: One year as a Chancellor Fellow

It is not every day you meet the Federal Chancellor of Germany. However, for the current German Chancellor’s Fellows of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, this visit is on program every year. Recently, as the current German Chancellor Fellow and Guest Scientist at Fraunhofer ISE, I got an opportunity to meet Dr. Angela Merkel. Every [...]
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Episode 05: An Espresso with… Prof. Christoph Reinhart

Professor Christoph Reinhart came to Fraunhofer ISE as the winner of the Fraunhofer Bessel Research Award of the Humboldt Foundation for a research stay. He works as a building scientist and architectural educator at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he focuses on sustainable building design and environmental modeling. For the series “An Espresso [...]
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Fighting the Losses: Power Electronics for Energy Storage Applications

In the wake of the changeover to renewables in the energy and transport sectors, storage systems are a key technology. They will play a major role in the energy transformation, from balancing the fluctuating feed-in from renewables through to making a 100 % renewable energy supply possible. Also in the transport sector, storage is crucial [...]
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