Technology-based Energy System Analysis (TESA)
Interdisziplinäre Forschung für die Energiewende
In the ENERGY annex of the Jülich Aachen Research Alliance (JARA), the cooperation between the Forschungszentrum Jülich and the RWTH Aachen University, extensive technical expertise in the areas of process engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, earth sciences, biotechnology and chemistry will be brought together by the corresponding research institutes for interdisciplinary collaboration. Triggered by the growing demand for systems analysis underpinned by the intensive evaluation of technological innovations awaiting commercialization and conventional, already commercialized technologies, the interlinking of engineering and the natural sciences with economic and social science competencies is increasingly important. This reflects the utility of appropriate collaborations. The RWTH research institutes with social and economic competencies that would participate in an collaboration are active in the areas of energy economics, sustainability management, operations management, as well as technology and economic history.
For the execution of a holistic, interdisciplinary energy system analysis, 12 in JARA participating institutes founded an interdisciplinary research consortium entitled Technology-based Energy System Analysis (TESA) in 2014 with a total of €250,000 from the JARA-ENERGY Seed Fund to structure and strategically align activities and create a research agenda. Five working groups are currently working on five different topics, which will pave the way for the next TESA plan and should serve to generate subject-specific publications in high quality scientific journals.
In 2015, the seed-funded TESA project reached the next stage of development – the TESA Project House with 19 member institutes. For the execution of TESA’s core activities in the context of five doctoral projects and the initiation of large joint TESA projects, the project house-consortium has a total of €1,020,000 (€412,500 own share; €607,500 in funding) at its disposal.
Through the financial linking of TESA’s activities to particular funding for projects, the consortium intends to drive development towards a TESA ‘Integrated Interdisciplinary Institute’ (I3), which will be constructed as a research organization for holistic energy system analysis based on an interactive connection of system and methodological knowledge derived from the engineering, natural, economic and social sciences. With Meta-Ensys, the consortium has undertaken an extensive joint project funded by the BMWi.