Uni­ver­si­ty of Bayreuth and City of Wun­siedel estab­lish Future Ener­gy Lab

The coop­er­a­tion of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Bayreuth with the city of Wun­siedel around the ener­gy park there will be fur­ther expand­ed. The Bavar­i­an Min­is­ter Pres­i­dent, Dr. Markus Söder, express­ly sup­ports the con­cept for a Future Ener­gy Lab drawn up by the two part­ners and announced yes­ter­day, Sep­tem­ber 14, 2022, that the Free State of Bavaria intends to pro­vide a total of 15.5 mil­lion euros over the next five years for the con­struc­tion and estab­lish­ment of this real lab­o­ra­to­ry under the lead­er­ship of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Bayreuth.

The Min­is­ter Pres­i­dent was a guest in Wun­siedel on the occa­sion of the com­mis­sion­ing of the largest elec­trolyz­er in Bavaria. The plant installed by Siemens has a capac­i­ty of 8.75 MW and pro­duces around 1,350 tons of hydro­gen per year. The Uni­ver­si­ty of Bayreuth has already been involved in the real­iza­tion of this plant with the ZET-Real­la­bor Energiezukun­ft Wun­siedel, which is fund­ed by the Upper Fran­co­nia Foun­da­tion. Pro­fes­sor Dr.-Ing. Dieter Brügge­mann, direc­tor of the Cen­ter for Ener­gy Tech­nol­o­gy (ZET) at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Bayreuth, points out that the future Future Ener­gy Lab will build on this coop­er­a­tion, but that the range of top­ics will be specif­i­cal­ly expand­ed with a com­pe­tence team from the uni­ver­si­ty: “With the fund­ing that has now been con­crete­ly announced, we will be able to quick­ly address impor­tant aspects for our future ener­gy sup­ply through research and devel­op­ment and direct­ly test them in the real lab.” These include dig­i­ti­za­tion and arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence, sec­tor cou­pling and hydro­gen, inno­v­a­tive stor­age con­cepts and stor­age tech­nolo­gies. Anoth­er focus is on ques­tions of legal reg­u­la­tion. The par­tic­i­pa­tion of local cit­i­zens is express­ly desired in all these developments.

“We are active­ly tack­ling top­ics such as the fur­ther train­ing of skilled work­ers and the estab­lish­ment of new com­pa­nies. We want to help ensure that young peo­ple con­tin­ue to have attrac­tive career prospects in the region in the future,” says Brügge­mann. He sees the Future Ener­gy Lab not only as a sig­nif­i­cant expan­sion of the exist­ing ener­gy park in Wun­siedel, but at the same time as an essen­tial build­ing block for the dig­i­tized, decar­bonized, nat­ur­al gas-inde­pen­dent, decen­tral­ized and CO2-neu­tral ener­gy future in Bavaria: “What the Uni­ver­si­ty of Bayreuth and the city of Wun­siedel are build­ing togeth­er over the next few years will serve as a mod­el and pat­tern for many com­mu­ni­ties far beyond the state borders.”