Fraunhofer Chronicle



Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Georg Rosenfeld
© Photo Bernhard Huber/Fraunhofer

Georg Rosenfeld is new member of the Fraunhofer executive board


Professor Dr. rer. nat. Georg Rosenfeld is the new Executive Vice President for Technology Marketing and Business Models since 1 April 2016. He has been with the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft since 1999, and most recently he has served as Director of Research.

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Fraunhofer continues to grow

The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft presented its financial statements for 2015 at the annual meeting in Essen. The total business volume of Europe’s largest applied-research organization increased by three percent compared with the previous year to €2.115 billion. Industrial revenue grew by four percent to €641 million, boosted in particular by the expansion of Fraunhofer’s international activities.

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Sustainable growth – both financial and structural

Sustainable growth – both financial and structural
© Photo Ines Escherich/Fraunhofer

At the Fraunhofer General Assembly Meeting in Essen President Prof. Reimund Neugebauer presented the strategy of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.

Last year, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft achieved more than 2.1 billion euros in business volume – an impressive new record. In line with this strong performance, Fraunhofer pushed ahead with its strategy to expand its scope: the Senate decided to establish a Fraunhofer Research Institution for Casting, Composite and Processing Technology IGCV. The expansion of Fraunhofer High Performance Centers is also continuing. For instance, the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia is supporting three new High Performance Centers to the tune of some eight million euros.

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Fraunhofer and the German federal government are paving the way for an Industrial Data Space


Together with partners from industry and with support from the German federal government, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is launching an initiative to create a data space available to industry all over the world: the Industrial Data Space. Access and usage of the Industrial Data Space will be safeguarded by a set of uniform standards. The goal is to develop secure solutions in the face of wall-to-wall digitalization and the rapid shifts in industrial manufacturing and business processes that come with it.

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Industrial Data Space – Fraunhofer presents industry-supported key issue paper at CeBIT

© Photo Kurt Fuchs/Fraunhofer

Our businesses are facing big challenges: the fourth industrial revolution, cloud computing, smart data and the Internet of Things are on their way to have a lasting impact not only on manufacturing but also on traditional business models. Fraunhofer experts summarized their recommendations concerning an open international data space in a key issue paper presented at CeBIT in Hannover.

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Fraunhofer initiative for secure data space launched

The third top-level discussion on the Industrial Data Space was held at the Fraunhofer-Forum Berlin on September 23. The goal of the initiative is to enable companies to securely exchange and combine data. It helps companies make their production and business processes fit for digitalization, thus creating a foundation for business model innovation. The Industrial Data Space concept is aimed at establishing comprehensive, cross-sector connectivity in an open data space. This will make it easier for companies to utilize the potential of digitalization in their business models without relinquishing control over their data.

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Changes to the Fraunhofer Executive Board: departure of Prof. Verl

© Photo Stefanie Aumiller/Fraunhofer

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dr. h.c. mult. Alexander Verl

Prof. Verl, Executive Vice President Technology Marketing and Business Models for the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft e.V., is stepping down for personal reasons and by mutual agreement, effective September 1, 2015.

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© Photo Ryan Carter/Crown Prince Court – Abu Dhabi

Fraunhofer solar researchers are awarded the coveted Zayed Future Energy Prize 2014

Long before Germany set out on its journey toward a new energy economy, scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg were already developing ways to tap sources of renewable energy – in particular the sun. This dedication to renewables over many years has now been recognized in the form of the Zayed Future Energy Prize 2014. Awarded to Fraunhofer ISE on January 20, 2014, the prize is endowed with 1.5 million US dollars. Prizewinners are selected on the basis of the degree to which they bring about a tangible change in industry, society and the environment, their impact as a leader and role model, and the viability and innovative potential of their organization.

Prof. Alexander Verl becomes Executive Vice President

© Photo Fraunhofer

Prof. Alexander Verl assumed his position as Member of the Board and Executive Vice President for Technology Marketing and Business Models on 1 April 2014. He moves from Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA to senior level management of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. The new department has been created to further develop potential within Fraunhofer – by utilizing the results of research and marketing research achievements.


© Photo Fraunhofer AISEC

IT Security is Becoming Cornerstone of German Economy 

Our dependence on information technology is growing, as are attacks on IT systems in order to manipulate or copy them. Together with the political, economic and scientific sectors Fraunhofer is working on strategies and solutions intended to prevent this. With intelligent technologies for the security of embedded systems, smart grids, Cloud computing or mobile devices researchers are improving our private security and protecting company products and services.

Prof. Ulrich Buller hangs up his spurs

After almost 30 years at Fraunhofer, Professor Ulrich Buller, Senior Vice President Research Planning, has retired. He contributed to the successful development of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in a variety of roles and was a driving force behind many exciting new initiatives. He was a strong advocate of building links with industry, the Max Planck Society, and universities and other tertiary institutions.

Annual Conference of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

© Photo Dirk Mahler/Fraunhofer

Research prizes are awarded at the annual meeting of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s General Assembly, which this time takes place in Hannover. Four Fraunhofer prizes will be awarded this year – one in the special category of Human-Centered Technology – and three Hugo Geiger prizes.

Fraunhofer Center for Energy Innovation CEI established in the USA

On July 25 the contract is signed by Fraunhofer and the University of Connecticut UConn for the establishment of the new research facility. The mission of the Fraunhofer Center for Energy Innovation CEI at the University of Connecticut is to develop advanced technologies related to energy storage, fuel cells, in-stream hydro, power management and distribution through contract research.

Controlled ablation

© Photo Ansgar Pudenz / Deutscher Zukunftpreis

Ultra-short laser pulses provide a fast and precise way of processing a wide range of materials without excessive heat input. Scientists from Bosch, TRUMPF, Jena University and Fraunhofer IOF have turned the ultra-short-pulse laser into an effective series-production tool. For their collective effort they were awarded the German Future Prize 2013 on December 4.

European Innovation Prize for Fraunhofer

© Photo Fraunhofer IPK

Technology can assist in compiling history. Fraunhofer researchers receive the European Innovation Prize from the European Association of Research and Technology Organisations (EARTO) on 4 Dec 2013 for software that reconstructs files of the East German state security service.


Prof. Reimund Neugebauer

New Fraunhofer President: Professor Reimund Neugebauer

Professor Reimund Neugebauer takes office as Fraunhofer President at its headquarters in Munich. He is now in charge of Europe’s largest organization for applied research, with more than 20,000 employees. The Senate of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft elected him in May.

Fraunhofer Prize Award

Fraunhofer Prize Award 2012
© Photo Fraunhofer

During the annual conference of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft on May 8 2012 in Stuttgart the following prizes were awarded: The Joseph von Fraunhofer prizes, the Hugo Geiger prizes and the Stiftervervband Science Prize.

Fraunhofer UK Research Ltd.

The wholly-owned subsidiary Fraunhofer UK Research Ltd. was established in Glasgow in March 2012. It operates the Fraunhofer Center for Applied Photonics CAP.

Fraunhofer in Brazil

The first Fraunhofer Project Center (FPC) in Brazil was opened on 9 March 2012 in Salvador, Bahia. The new Center will be active in the area of Software and Systems Engineering and will address topics such as innovative solutions for critical and/or large systems, mobile business applications, e-Government, and ambient assisted living.


Fraunhofer Research Institution for Electronic Nano Systems ENAS becomes institute

Since January 1, the Fraunhofer Research Institution for Electronic Nano Systems ENAS in Chemnitz is an independent institute. The researchers at the Fraunhofer ENAS are specialized in smart systems integration using micro-and nanotechnologies.

Germany’s Renowned Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute Opens Boston Office

On May 5, Fraunhofer USA opened a US office in association with the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute (HHI) at the Davenport Building in Cambridge MA. Through this office, Fraunhofer USA will offer innovative technologies developed in German research labs to companies in the US and Canada. The bulk of this technology is intended for medical and security uses, although product-related applications from the fields of 3D multimedia, control by gesture systems, wireless optical data transmission and optical sensor systems will also be showcased.

Fraunhofer Prize Award 2011

During the annual conference of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft on May 26 in Nuremberg the following prizes were awarded: The Technology Prize for Human-Centered Technology, three Joseph von Fraunhofer prizes and three Hugo Geiger prizes.

Dr. Alexander Kurz is new Senior Vice President Personnel and Legal Affairs

Dr. Alexander Kurz
© Photo Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

Dr. Alexander Kurz, Vorstand Personal und Recht

Since June 1, Dr. Alexander Kurz is the new Senior Vice President Personnel and Legal Affairs of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. The experienced research manager was most recently Vice President of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology KIT that lately emerged from the fusion of university and research center.

SIT in Munich becomes Fraunhofer AISEC

Since July 1, the Munich Project Group »Security and Reliability« of the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology SIT is the independent Fraunhofer Research Institution for Applied and Integrated Security AISEC. Researchers are working, among other things, to increase the security of cloud computing and embedded systems.

Fraunhofer opens Center for Systems Biotechnology in Chile

On September 1 the Chilean Minister of the Economy, Mr Pablo Longueira and Professor Bullinger officially opened Fraunhofer´s first research center in South America. The new Fraunhofer Center for Systems Biotechnology has been established in Santiago de Chile to develop and optimize new technologies in key areas of importance for the Chilean economy. The research projects are collaborations between Chilean and German scientists and focus at present on aquaculture, renewable energy, agriculture, and bio-computing.


50 Years of Laser: Laser light as a tool

Fraunhofer researchers have significantly contributed to make the laser suitable for industrial use in Germany. Once derided as »invention in search of an application« the laser has been developed to an almost universal tool. Its outstanding characteristic, to allow highest concentration of energy in a small space, makes it indispensable for almost all materials and tasks.

Economy-Science Research Alliance supports high-tech strategy of the German Government

On February 25, 2010, the research union Economy-Science starts its work with an inaugural meeting. It advises the Federal Government in the implementation of the new high-tech strategy. As before, the research union will be managed by Prof. Hans-Jörg Bullinger, President of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, and Dr. Arend Oetker, President of the »Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft«.

Fraunhofer founds Center for Maritime Logistics and Services

On December 2, Fraunhofer opened the Center for Logistics and Maritime Services CML in Hamburg. The new center will focus on the optimization of processes along the maritime supply chain. Research priorities include port planning and fleet management. The CML is a research institution of the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics IML.