Expert Committee
Materials in Energy Systems

The conversion, transport, and storage of energy are among the most pressing technological challenges facing our society. A sustainable, safe and resource-saving energy supply can only be ensured by developing appropriate materials and functional materials. The materials used in energy technology, as well as the manufacturing processes required for their application, span a wide range of classes. The Expert Committee pools materials science expertise in these areas.

In order for Germany to retain its position as one of the world's most energy-efficient and ecological economies, and for the German government's high-tech strategy with regard to the "energy" megatrend to actually be implemented, there is no way around the innovative developments in materials science and materials engineering in energy technology. 

Research into the fundamentals of new energy materials and the development of new functional materials are currently urgent tasks. There is a clear bottleneck in the economic and quantitatively sufficient production of the materials developed in basic research with great application potential. New, original, and interdisciplinary research approaches are required here, especially for the production, combination, and application of suitable materials and of material systems. 

For more power. Materials in power engineering
Our society is becoming ever more energy-hungry. In order to sustainably meet our energy needs, energy generation (conversion) from renewable energy sources, their transport and storage is a very urgent technological challenge. Energy-saving can also only be achieved through innovative materials. To this end, the development, production, and application of appropriate materials and functional materials, in particular, is urgently required. The materials used in energy technology, their production, as well as their application challenges are distributed across all material classes and are widely diversified.

Sun, electricity and heat, water wind
These are the diverse forms of renewable energy that we can use for our energy supply. These require diverse materials to manage the many challenges of the energy transition. Research into new materials, such as the new development of functional materials, is urgently needed. The associated materials technology must also be developed. There is a clear bottleneck in the economic and large-scale production of the newly developed materials with great application potential. New, original, and interdisciplinary research approaches are needed here, especially for the production, combination, and application of suitable materials and material systems. For electrical energy transport, new materials for conductors (superconductors), insulation materials, and good heat dissipaters must be found. Comparable challenges exist in the field of energy storage (batteries, latent heat storage). Concerted research programs for the implementation and application development of functionally suitable materials would also be important. The development of the appropriate technical systems for local or large-scale application in material systems for electrical or thermal energy storage, electrical or thermal energy transport. The question of grid supply security and efficiency also plays an important role here. Another field of research is the possible increase in efficiency in photocatalytic energy conversion and energy conversion from solar, hydro, and wind energy into electricity and useful heat.

All of this requires a joint effort by the disciplines and industries involved, universities and companies - an effort that jointly drives development from fundamentals to manufacturing to application. In the process, all efforts must also focus on the clever combination of materials in a functioning system.

Enabling applications and reducing costs
The DGM Expert Committee aims to promote new findings in this field, communicate the current state of knowledge, and advance knowledge transfer. The main focus is on thermal materials, photocatalytic materials, electrical energy storage systems, and materials for the electrical energy industry. In line with its interdisciplinary remit, the Expert Committee brings together materials scientists, engineers, physicists, and chemists from universities and research centers - as well as representatives from companies. The committee also includes representatives from companies that can produce the necessary equipment and systems as well as the required starting materials.

Promoting cooperation and transfer
The Expert Committee organizes meetings and workshops and brings together the protagonists involved across material classes to discuss new trends, identify challenges, and ultimately accelerate a faster transfer from basic research to industrial application. For this purpose, an intensive exchange is facilitated.

Goals

  • Bundling of competencies in materials research and materials engineering with special reference to energy technology.
  • Joint discussion of innovations, trends and challenges for materials in energy conversion, energy storage and energy transport.
  • Exchange of experience between science and industry (universities, research institutes, manufacturers, users) and creation of interfaces for rapid translation of new material developments into industrial implementation.
  • Initiation of overarching research and development projects, joint projects between universities, research institutes and industry.
  • Debate with decision-makers.

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