Transformation of Energy Systems

To implement an energy supply with a high proportion of renewable sources is considered as a challenge. In our research field "Transformation of Energy Systems" we create, analyse and optimise future scenarios for a sustainable energy supply.

We consider a broad variety of regional, transregional and international demand and supply situations. Using real load and climate information as well as different modelling approaches economically and ecologically optimum supply structures are determined based on transparent input data and different cost assumptions. The optimisation refers to the defined overall system. Its modelling is implemented as realistically as possible or necessary with detailed knowledge of the individual components. In addition to conventional heating and power plants, renewable energy systems and ambient heat, especially storage technologies such as electrolysis, methanation, pumped storage and different types of batteries are included.

We dispose of different models specially developed for the calculation of the electricity sector. With our multi-region model we are able to optimize the regional distribution of supply capacities. Thus central and decentralised structures of energy supply as well as the demand for transmission and storage capacities can be mapped and optimized.

Our "Heat Tool" allows investigating the effectiveness of various measures in the building sector regarding energy consumption and CO2 emissions. These include renovation of differentiated types of buildings, choice of fuel, heating refurbishment or modification of the heating type. Coupled optimization of heat and electricity is an important part of our research and is continually developed.

The focus of the RLI is an implementation-oriented research. The consideration of socioeconomic aspects is therefore a key issue in all topics of the institute. In order to foster regional developments through to decentralized energy supply, the integration and networking of local actors and the development of business models are as well part of the working field of the RLI as the anticipation of future regional developments.

Editha Kötter

Head of Unit

Mascha Richter

Head of Unit

Fields of Competence

Project Management

Innovative research projects in the field of renewable energies are drivers of the necessary fundamental change in the ways we supply and use energy. As a non-profit research institute we are independent and provide the necessary expertise for designing and acquiring new projects as well as executing and utilizing both publicly and privately funded projects focusing on renewable energy systems.


The collection, measurement, preparation, and processing of data is one of our key competencies. It is of outstanding importance for the following working steps as data serve as input for simulations, analyses, and application. We derive reliable results based on well validated input data. To guarantee that we can generate, validate, process, and structure data on many different ways.


On the basis of our models and data our simulations generate a condensed image of real systems to achieve that complex systems become understandable and can be manageably modeled and analysed.


Simulations and measurements generate comprehensive results which we process, evaluate, and make available by applying a diverse range of analyses. Through our interdisciplinary approach we conduct analyses from different perspectives and consider cross-sectoral relationships. This primarily refers to the interaction of the electricity supply, heat supply and mobility sector.


As a non-profit research institute we guarantee objective and independent support for real-life applications. We bring theoretic insights into applications and reflect practical experience back into our simulations and research projects.


Our Projects

Our Publications