Research and development

Research and development

The Federal Government is contributing to the further expansion of climate-friendly technologies in Germany through direct funding of research and development. This includes, among other things, the production of battery cells and the use of hydrogen as a “green” energy source.

Strengthening battery cell production in Germany

At the core of every battery is the battery cell, which also accounts for the largest proportion of the value added. That is up to 40 percent in the case of electric cars.
There are also many other instances where batteries are required: from smart watches, medical technology and tools, through to large stationary storage batteries that provide renewable energy.

Battery cell production is a key component for the expansion of electric mobility and the integration of renewable energies in the power network. For the purpose of establishing several development and production sites, the Federal Government is providing funds of up to three billion euros for battery cell production in Germany.  Its social and economic significance justifies state funding that extends beyond the bounds of e.g. pure research funding. Alongside national efforts in research and innovation, as well as resulting pilot industrial production, the greatest possible benefit is derived from the entire “value added chain of the battery”.

Hydrogen is central to climate-friendly industry

Alongside energy efficiency and renewable energies, hydrogen is a further key element for the conversion to climate-neutral industry. With its National Hydrogen Strategy, the Federal Government aims to make Germany the world’s leading supplier of modern hydrogen technologies. It is investing seven billion euros to make hydrogen commercially viable.

There are many diverse possible uses of hydrogen in the sectors of energy, industry and transport. The plan is for it to be used primarily wherever decarbonisation, i.e. economic activity without fossil fuels, would not otherwise be possible or only possible at a very high cost. Hydrogen is suitable for the flexible storage of electricity from renewable energies as well as, in particular, as a raw material for industrial (mainly chemical) processes. In transport, for example, it can be used for railways and shipping and possibly, in future, also for aircraft and engines for vehicles, e.g. in buses or HGVs. The Hydrogen Strategy is based on an approach that is open to all types of technology. The funding is focused on the use of “green” hydrogen as an energy source generated from renewable electricity.

Synthetic fuels

The Federal Government is commissioning investigations and research that are open to all types of technology into alternatives providing CO2-free mobility. Synthetic fuels are almost climate-neutral if they are produced from renewable energies, water and CO2. Numerous partners from research, the car, supplier, oil and chemicals industries are involved in the research initiatives “Nachhaltige Mobilität mit synthetischen Kraftstoffen” (sustainable mobility with synthetic fuels) and “Energiewende im Verkehr” (energy transition in transport). The Federal Government is providing around 100 million euros for this.

The Federal Government is investing in research for climate protection over the next few years. This includes, for example, new processes for a more environmentally-friendly use of renewable raw materials (bio-economy), pilot projects for climate-neutral towns and cities, carbon-free industrial processes and the importance of the financial sector for climate protection. Through its energy research programme, the Federal Government is also promoting innovative energy technologies which make a significant contribution to climate protection along the entire energy chain: from generation, transport and storage through to application in various sectors.