Themenbereich Energie- und Umwelttechnik
The Solar Research Center is a research group within the Institute for Thermodynamics (Prof. Dr.-Ing. Thomas Sattelmayer) at Technische Universität München (TUM). Headed by Dr.-Ing. Markus Spinnler, the group started to work on small-scale solar powered desalination systems for remote, rural areas 10 years ago. Initially, the focus of research lay in the area of humidification-dehumidification (HD) based on free convection. Up to now, a number of HD-related projects with forced convection, multistage HD, HD with integrated thermal storage, and HD with the goal to treat problematic waste water and to concentrate liquid sorbents were following.
Coming from solar energy technology, the research group follows a new approach for reverse osmosis (RO) plants powered by hybrid photovoltaic and thermal (PV/T) collectors since 2012. Research activities follow the goal to learn about the impact of transient solar supply on the membranes and about the benefits of solar brine preheating. In several cooperation projects with MENA countries, TUM gained international experience in seawater desalination.
Since 2009, TUM is hosting the international TUM DeSal Challenge – a competition for student teams from high schools and universities to build up their own small scale, stand-alone desalination plant. Since 2012, TUM is offering a specialized lecture on desalination technologies, which is very well received by a growing number of participants of actually 80 students a year.
Renewable Energy Desalination
Following the project “mute”, in the research cooperation Visio.M, technical solutions for a subcompact electric vehicle are investigated. Lehrstuhl für Thermodynamik is developing a novel thermal management system to improve simultaneously thermal comfort and vehicle range.
Electric vehicle „mute“
In cooperation with 20 institutes of TUM and industrial partners a new concept for an electric vehicle
is being developed. Lehrstuhl für ThermodynamiK provides heating and cooling concepts which amplify the
range of the vehicle in comparison to conventional concepts. For the project “mute” a
fuel-fired park heater has been integrated into the HVAC-unit to assure energy efficient heating.
“mute” has been presented at the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA) 2011.
Solar Thermal and Photovoltaics
Solar thermal hydrogen and nitrogen extraction from regolith on moon.
Humidification-Dehumidification based concentration of liquid residues from a biogas plant.
Energy-efficient thermal management of electric vehicles.
Development of a Novel Solar Active Sunshading System with Thin Film PV Cells.
Solar Decathlon 2007
Solar Active Window Shutters with Trackable Photovoltaic Slats.
Use of Double-Skin Façades for Building Supply.
VIAX Two-Axis Tracking System
Development, Construction and Test of a 2-Axis Tracking System for Photovoltaic Cells
with the VIAX-Gear.
High-Temperature Insulations and Fuel Cells
The Vakutherm Project: Heat Balance for High-Temperature Fuel Cell
Solar Dryer for Drying Agricultural Products in Developing Countries.