The energy transition in the field of transportation represents a particular challenge since mobility in Germany is as yet 90 percent crude oil-based. The German Federal Government’s energy concept for the transport sector aims to reduce final energy consumption by 10 percent by 2020 and by 40 percent by 2050, based on 2005 levels. To reach these targets, the government aims to switch road transportation to more environmentally friendly means of transport such as bus, rail or bicycle and carry out general process optimisation. The government’s second focus is on renewable fuels which are compatible with environmental protection.

// Reduced CO2 thanks to renewable gas and batteries

Renewable methane, renewable hydrogen and electrical battery drives not only offer the best prospects for effective CO2 reduction, they are also capable of storing renewable power – a crucial contribution to grid stability.

ZSW can draw on a wealth of experience and, thanks to years of research, special detailed knowledge of the technologies involved, especially in the promising areas of battery-based e-mobility, hydrogen production and e-fuels. While the eLab laboratories in Ulm focus on analysing the electrochemical components, the Renewable Fuels and Processes department in Stuttgart is continuously developing P2G® technology for producing hydrogen and methane.

// Energy sector concepts for renewable drives

The System Analysis department picks up on these technical developments and develops concepts for nationwide, system-relevant use. Among other activities, with the aim of creating incentives for the development of specific technologies, the department reflects technical development paths against economic restrictions. In various projects, such as komDRIVE, ZSW has studied the current and future cost potential of traction batteries. Based on sensitivity analysis and taking different business models into consideration, the department produces forecasts for the future and compares different concept approaches as well as evaluating them on the basis of the Total Cost of Ownership principle. Among its aims is the deduction of recommendations for action for industry and politics to strengthen Germany and Baden-Wuerttemberg as present and future business locations.

The Power-to-Gas Baden-Württemberg’ flagship project develops business models for the renewable provision of e-fuels (eH2, eCH4, ePtL). A promising concept, not just for individual personal transportation but also for transport services that will require further electricity sources in addition to batteries. The latter include, for instance, long-distance mobility as well as freight, rail, air and shipping.