Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE

Digitalization: The Enabler and Driver of the Energy Transition

In the future energy system, digitalization is key for decentralization and flexibility as well as achieving energy and resource efficiency.

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Photovoltaics is a central pillar of the future energy supply from both an economical and ecological point of view.

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Energy Efficient Buildings

Energy efficiency in buildings plays a central role in climate protection. Currently the building sector in Germany is responsible for over 40% of the final energy demand.

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Solar Thermal Power Plants and Industrial Processes

Already today, concentrating solar thermal power plants (CSP) coupled with large thermal storage units provide dispatchable renewable electricity. Such systems show great potential for industrial systems, increasing efficiency and allowing more flexibility in the energy flows.

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Hydrogen Technologies and Electrical Energy Storage

Our R&D services address the generation, conversion and further thermo-chemical processing of hydrogen. In electrical energy storage, we offer R&D along the entire value chain: from materials, through the cell and module up to the complete battery system.

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Power Electronics, Grids and Smart Systems

We are working to optimize the interplay between efficient renewable energy generation, the security of supply, energy storage and stable grid operation.

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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 9001:2015. Founded in 1981, Fraunhofer ISE, with a staff of over 1200, is the largest solar research institute in Europe.

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Current Press Releases


Press Release #16 / 3.6.2019

Photovoltaics – Game Changer in the Global Energy System

Leading international PV researchers gathered by the Global Alliance for Solar Energy Research Institutes describe the key points of the future developments in an article which appeared on May 31, 2019 in »Science«.


Press Release #14 / 21.5.2019

New Photovoltaic Production Factories in Europe Are Possible

In a panel discussion at the Intersolar Europe in Munich, experts from industry, research and associations addressed the exciting question “Would a PV factory in Germany/ Europe be realistic?” The chances and possibilities of re-establishing a photovoltaic production in Germany and Europe were discussed.


Press Release #11 / 8.5.2019

Fraunhofer ISE Showcases Shingle Solar Cells, Integrated Photovoltaics, Power Electronics, Solar Forecasting and Battery Technology at Intersolar Europe

Completing the institute’s range of services at the leading exhibition for solar technology will be numerous presentations and workshops as part of the accompanying program and the conferences hosted by Intersolar Europe and EES.


Press Release #10 / 12.4.2019

Agrophotovoltaics: High Harvesting Yield in Hot Summer of 2018

The results from 2017 showed a land use efficiency of 160 percent, as confirmed by the project consortium under the direction of the Fraunhofe ISE. The performance of the agrophotovoltaic system in the very hot summer of 2018 greatly exceeded this value. The partial shading underneath the photovoltaic modules improved the agricultural yield, and the sun-rich summer increased the solar electricity production.

News and Events

IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC)

Chicago, United States / 06/16/2019 - 06/21/2019

Polymers in Photovoltaics Conference

Hamburg, Germany / 06/19/2019 - 06/20/2019


Analyzing Bifacial Modules under Realistic Conditions

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg implemented new analytic models into the software SmartCalc.CTM which simulates the losses and gains in power output due to cell-to-module (CTM) integration. Significantly extended features now include the analysis of solar modules with bifacial solar cells and the freedom to define arbitrary operation conditions. SmartCalc.CTM now supports module optimization beyond laboratory conditions for an even greater variety of technologies.
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Fraunhofer ISE joins the European Perovskite Initiative for the Development of Perovskites based Solar Technology (EPKI)

Perovskite based solar cells have made tremendous progress over the last decade achieving outstanding lab-scale efficiencies of 24.2% early 2019 in single-junction architecture and to an astonishing 28% in tandem (perovskite associated with crystalline silicon), turning it into the fastest-advancing solar technology to date. The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is among the founding members of the European Perovskite Initiative (EPKI) that was launched during the Smarter E Europe in Munich today.
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New Training Course on Central Receivers Systems in SFERA 3 Project

After the success of the SFERA 2 (Solar Facilities for the European Research Area) training courses program, the SFERA 3 consortium is pleased to present the continuation of the program starting with the topic of solar towers with focus on optics and power measurement. The Fraunhofer-Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is a partner in the training on solar tower systems and will present simulation tools and measurement technology.
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New Approaches to Reliability Assessment: 9th SOPHIA Workshop PV-Module Reliability

From May 28 -29, the Polymer Competence Center Leoben (PCCL) and the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, supported by Austrian Photovoltaics Technology Platform, will host the 2019 SOPHIA workshop “PV-Module Reliability”. The workshop in Graz, Austria, will focus on reliability aspects of innovative materials, developments in modeling and the standardization of lifetime predictions. Experts from research and industry will also discuss the influence of reliability and service life on the sustainability of PV modules with the participants.
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Event Horizon Summit 2019

Berlin, Germany / 06/19/2019 - 06/20/2019

ICEM 2019 – 6th International Conference Energy & Meteorology

Copenhagen, Denmark / 06/24/2019 - 06/27/2019


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:


Digital Tool for the Electricity Grid: Forecasting Model to Determine the Power Output of PV Modules

As part of a research project, Dr. Sven Killinger developed a forecasting model that provides grid operators with data on the power output of PV systems in real-time. In the interview, he explains how it works. The cover of the Fraunhofer ISE’s newly released annual report shows a satellite image of a city with various [...]
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Net Electricity Production in Germany: How has it developed in the past ten years?

With a single glance, small changes often go unnoticed. Over a long period of time, however, many small changes can add up to make an enormous difference. Using the Fraunhofer ISE Energy Charts, we decreased the zoom factor and thus were able to compare the net electricity generation of the past ten years, from 2009 [...]
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Fraunhofer CSET: Research for the Energy Transition in Chile – Part 2

In the second part of the blog post about the Fraunhofer CSET in Santiago de Chile, we look at current research projects and present services offered for the Chilean market. In February 2018, the CSET was taken over and further developed by Frank Dinter as Managing Director. The CSET has two major lines of research: [...]
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Fraunhofer CSET: Research for the Energy Transition in Chile – Part 1

Since 2015, Santiago de Chile has been home to the Center for Solar Energy Technology (Centro para Tecnologías en Energía Solar – CSET) of the Fraunhofer Chile Research Foundation. It was founded as an Excellence Center for solar energy by the Chilean concession and economic development authority Corfo in order to promote the further expansion [...]
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