Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE

Tandem Photovoltaics –
The Road to Higher Conversion Efficiencies#

Our research aim is to increase the energy conversion efficiency of photovoltaics and bring down the costs. Tandem photovoltaics holds great promise for achieving these goals and is among the fastest-developing solar technologies today.

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Heat Pumps –
A Key Technology for the Energy Transition#

Heat pumps will be the dominant heating technology in the future energy system. Scientific studies have shown they will play a key role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the building sector. Today heat pumps are used in numerous types of buildings.

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Integrated Photovoltaics – Areas for the Energy Transformation#

Integrating PV technology into building envelopes, vehicles and roads, as well as over agricultural fields and floating on water surfaces, capitalizes on surface areas with a tremendous potential for generating solar power.

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© Fraunhofer ISE/Foto: Dirk Mahler


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

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Energieeffiziente Gebäude
© ingenhoven architects H. G. Esch

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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© Fraunhofer ISE

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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© Fraunhofer ISE

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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© Fraunhofer ISE/Foto: Dirk Mahler

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 1300, is the largest solar research institute in Europe.


Dear customers, project partners, sponsors and friends,

Fraunhofer ISE will continue to do everything in its power to protect the health of its employees and society as a whole by acting responsibly. Therefore, we strictly adhere to the official guidelines and those of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft for the COVID-19 pandemic and also implement measures which are specific to Fraunhofer ISE.

Of course, we remain in operation and continue to serve you. We process all project orders and continue to carry out our R&D for the energy transition. Our employees are working partly at the institute and partly in their home offices. Therefore, please get in touch with your contact person preferably by e-mail. Should you still have difficulties in contacting them, please call our main telephone number: +49 761 4588-0.

We wish you, your relatives and employees good health!

Warm regards,

Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Henning
Prof. Dr. Andreas Bett

Institute Directors Fraunhofer ISE


Fraunhofer ISE - Newsletter

You are interested in up-to-date information on our R&D activities?



Paths to a Climate-Neutral Energy System

The German Energy Transition in its Social Context

Current Press Releases#


Press Release #17 / 27.7.2021

Photovoltaics Report Delivers Facts about Solar Energy Worldwide

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, supported by PSE Projects GmbH, has been publishing the PV Report on a regular basis for the past decade. The report contains a compilation of the most important facts on photovoltaics (PV) in Germany, the European Union and worldwide.


Press Release #15 / 9.7.2021

German Net Electricity Generation in 1st Half of 2021: Decline in Renewables due to Weak Winds

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE just presented the data on the net electricity generation for the public power supply for the first half of 2021 from the Energy Charts data platform.


Press Release #14 / 2.7.2021

Solar Systems Learn To Swim: Research and Industry Join Forces to Perform Long-Term Tests On Different System Designs

Floating photovoltaic power plants can contribute to the expansion of renewable energy without taking up land. 




Press Release #11 / 22.6.2021

Levelized Cost of Electricity:

Renewables Clearly Superior to Conventional Power Plants Due to Rising CO2 Prices

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE have presented the newest edition of their study on the levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) of renewable power plants.

Film Portrait#

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News and Events#


Trade Fairs, Conferences and Workshops


Gips-Schüle Young Scientist Award 2021 - Markus Feifel of Fraunhofer ISE Receives Certificate for Outstanding Achievements

On July 27, 2021, the Gips-Schüle Young Scientist Award was presented in Tübingen. The Gips-Schüle Foundation annually honors outstanding doctoral theses in Baden-Württemberg in the fields of mathematics, computer science, natural sciences and technology. Dr. Markus Feifel received a certificate of outstanding achievements in the category of science and engineering for his doctoral thesis on tandem photovoltaics, carried out at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg.
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BrineMine Project Looks at Geothermal Resources for Extraction of Energy, Raw Materials and Fresh Water

Northern Chile, one of the driest regions on the earth, has extensive geothermal resources. With innovative combined cycle power plants (CCPP), climate-friendly electricity can be generated and fresh water and mineral resources extracted at the same time. To this end, the German-Chilean research project “BrineMine”, funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, was launched in 2019 to develop strategies and technologies in this field. As part of the project, the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is developing the plant technology for subsequent industrial use. Part of the process chain has already been successfully demonstrated in operation in a geothermal power plant in the Upper Rhine Graben.
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Project MEEt: Fraunhofer ISE and NWO Institute AMOLF start cooperation on metamaterials

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE and the Dutch Research Councel (NWO) institute AMOLF have started a strategic cooperation in the field of metamaterials for optical applications. In the project "Metasurfaces for Energy Efficient Devices" (MEEt), the partners are developing metamaterials for solar cells, LEDs and optical sensors and the processes for their production. The joint project will run for three years and is funded by the Fraunhofer International Cooperation and Networking (ICON) program.
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EUREC Workshop “Strength through cooperation – Europe’s PV Value Chain working together”, June 9, 2021

EUREC - The Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centers – is holding a public workshop “Europe’s PV Value Chain Working Together” on 9 June from 13:30 to 16:30 CET. The online workshop will focus on the possibility for new players in European PV cell manufacturing to work together to achieve cost-efficiency. The agenda also features presentations from research centres on cell technologies at different stages of maturity.
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Current Posts from "Innovation4E", the Research Blog of Fraunhofer ISE#


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.

Research Blog of Fraunhofer ISE


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

Episode 12 of a series on heat pumps in existing buildings I Marek Miara / 20.5.2021

How do we get more heat pumps in existing buildings?

Episode 11 of a series on heat pumps in existing buildings I Marek Miara / 7.5.2021

Can heat pumps only be used in one- and two-family houses?

Episode 10 of a series on heat pumps in existing buildings | Marek Miara / 29.4.2021

Is it better to combine a heat pump with fossil heating in some cases?

Episode 9 of a series on heat pumps in existing buildings | Marek Miara / 24.2.2021

Is it worth waiting for technological developments before switching to a heat pump?

Episode 8 of a series on heat pumps in existing buildings | Marek Miara / 14.4.2021

Isn’t heating with heat pumps too expensive?

Episode 7 of a series on heat pumps in existing buildings | Marek Miara / 24.3.2021

How ecological are heat pumps in existing buildings?