Energy and Climate
The energy research performed at PSI focuses on processes that can be used in sustainable and safer technologies, ideally with minimal CO2 emissions. The main emphasis is on renewable energy sources. The ESI (Energy System Integration) platform enables research and industry to test solutions for integrating renewables into the existing energy supply. Another focus in this area is the safer use of nuclear energy. These activities are supplemented by analyses giving a comprehensive assessment of energy systems. PSI scientists in the Energy and Environment division study the chemical processes that take place in the atmosphere.
Find out more at: Overview Energy and Climate
A precise look into the finest particles in the air shows how compounds harmful to human health are formed.
Can Switzerland, as planned, reduce its CO2 emissions to zero by 2050? What is needed to achieve this? What could it cost?
In a new initiative, PSI and Empa want to jointly develop a process for producing kerosene from renewable resources.
On the way to a sustainable energy system, technologies that help to flexibly convert and efficiently store energy are becoming increasingly important. ReMaP, a novel research platform, aims to investigate these urgent issues under realistic conditions.
The composition of particulate matter can influence its harmfulness to human health just as much as the amount, PSI researchers show in a newly published study. Experiments and computational modelling showed that in Europe high concentrations of particulate matter harmful to human health occur mainly in metropolitan areas.
PSI researchers have set up camp at a biogas plant near Lucerne. Between meadows and gigantic fermenters, they are investigating how they can remove impurities from the biogas to make this energy source even more usable.
An international team of scientists has identified a novel driver of new aerosol particle formation in the Arctic: iodic acid, a chemical compound, which had not previously been observed in the region.
An international expedition with the participation of the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI discovers advanced glacial melting at an elevation of more than 4,000 metres on the Grand Combin in Valais. In the Alps, it may almost be too late for the Ice Memory project, which aims to save ice cores as a climate archive for future generations of researchers.
Future batteries need to store more energy, have longer life, and be safer and more environmentally friendly than today's batteries. The European initiative BATTERY 2030+, in which PSI is participating, is intended to help achieve these goals.
Within the framework of an international project, researchers from the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI are helping to save a valuable environmental and climatic archive. During an expedition 4,000 metres above sea level on Grand Combin in the Alps, they are drilling ice cores from melting glaciers to preserve them in Antarctica.
Decision support for car buyers: Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute have developed a web tool called the Carculator that can be used to compare the environmental performance of passenger cars in detail.
Researchers from the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, on behalf of a research project funded by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE), have studied how energy consumption by Swiss industry develops depending on energy prices. One result: Price increases for energy usually affect energy consumption only over the long term.
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have developed a new method to analyse particulate matter more precisely than ever before. With its help, they disproved an established doctrine: that molecules in aerosols undergo no further chemical transformations because they are enclosed in other particulate matter.
An interview on automotive power systems with Christian Bauer, a scientist at PSI's Laboratory for Energy Systems Analysis who specialises in life cycle and sustainability analyses.
Petrol, diesel, fuel cell or electric – which is the automobile of the future? A PSI study has examined the overall climate impact of various vehicle engines in use today and also projected it to the year 2040.
Making Switzerland's road traffic fit for the future calls for research, first and foremost. In the large-scale research facilities of PSI, chemists and engineers are investigating how to improve the efficiency of motors and reduce their emissions.
Three researchers share this year's Nobel Prize in Chemistry. They are being honoured for their respective contributions to the development of lithium-ion batteries. Petr Novák of PSI likewise works in this area of research and has known the three laureates personally for decades. In an interview, he tells about sitting directly across from one of them at the crucial moment.
A PSI research project investigating atmospheric chemistry will be on board the icebreaker Polarstern on 20th September 2019. Researcher Julia Schmale talks about the upcoming expedition and her role in it.
Every three years, the World Energy Council explores possible developments of the global energy system under different scenarios. Tom Kober, head of the Energy Economics Group in PSI’s Laboratory for Energy Systems Analysis and one of the lead authors of the study, explains what the individual scenarios mean and how global warming could be mitigated.
PSI researchers have observed mechanical processes in solid-state batteries with unprecedented precision. Using X-ray tomography at the Swiss Light Source SLS, they discovered how fissures inside the batteries propagate. These insights can help to make batteries for electric cars or smartphones safer and more efficient.