Energy Economics of Energy Systems

The overarching goal of the transformation of energy systems is the drastic reduction of climate-damaging CO2 emissions. This goal requires a holistic view of all elements of energy conversion and use, including all consumption sectors - private households, transport, industry and commerce - and all energy sources. The increasing use of variable renewable energy sources require a flexibility in the area of complementary energy supply and energy use, an increasing use of storage facilities of different technologies and sizes and, overall, an increasing convergence of the various components of the energy system.

At Fraunhofer ISE, we have developed a number of different, complementary modeling tools to map increasingly complex energy systems in detail. Time steps of hours and smaller are used to adequately capture the interplay of the contained components in their dynamics. The models differ, for example, in terms of spatial resolution and system boundaries. Thus, customer-specific questions can be answered using the most suitable model. The energy system model REMod  focuses on national and transnational energy systems and their transformation. Further models address partial aspects, e.g. the interaction of renewable energies for power generation with distribution grids and storage facilities (ENTIGRIS model). We have developed the DISTRICT and Kommod  for decentralized energy supply. These models answer questions regarding the concrete technical and economic implementation of local energy systems and municipal climate protection concepts.

Common to all models is the use of powerful optimizers to determine cost-minimized comprehensive solutions under given boundary conditions - e.g. upper limits for energy-related CO2 emissions.

R&D Services

Our R&D services on the topic "Energy Economics of Energy Systems" comprise

  • Economic modelling of energy systems
  • Sector-specific analyses of electricity, heat, industry and transport
  • Transformation paths for energy systems
  • Influence of framework conditions and social acceptance on the energy system
  • Simulation of investment decisions of stakeholders
  • Sector coupling and sector coupling measures
  • Decentralized energy supply concepts
  • Socio-economic parameter, technical potential and future expansion of renewables
  • Analysis and Modelling of today’s and future electricity prices and energy prices

Research Projects on this Topic

Kopernikus-Project ENavi – System Integration

Kopernikus projects for the Energy Trasition – Topic 4: System Integration 


Sustainable Use of Renewable Energy for the Delivery of Electricity, Heat, and Cooling in Energy Concepts for Buildings and Districts Under Consideration of Building Energy Efficiency - Initial Research


Demonstration of Flexibility Options in the Building Sector and their Interaction with the Energy System in Germany

Integrated Energy Concept 2050 – Electricity Heat Transport Industry

Development of an Integrated Energy Concept for 2050

WARO – WeatherAggReOpt

Methods to reduce the complexity of energy system models


Systemic Challenge of Heating Sector Transformation


Influence of Socio-Cultural Factors on Transformation Paths of Germany’s Energy System


Opportunities and Risks of Grid Autarky in Germany


Towards an Energy System in Europe Based on Renewables

SuperGrid – Energy-Economic Analysis

Components and Systems for HVDC Transmission from Generators and Storages to Suppliers in the European-North African Electrical Network


Grid Management as a New Market Participant to Optimize Electricity and Heat Usage

Analysis of a Technology Mix in a Renewable Energy Park in MENA

Technology Mix Optimization for a Solar and Wind Park in Kuwait