With the Center for Hybrid Electric Systems Cottbus (chesco), a globally unique center for research into hybrid-electric and electric drives is to be established at BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg. Pilot applications1 are to contribute to the goal of developing, manufacturing and testing climate-friendly and climate-neutral mobility applications.
The center structure is divided into the following areas, with one building for each of these areas:
1. The Research Center, where medium- and long-term research is conducted. 23 chairs and departments from various faculties of the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg will be integrated into the research center, and overarching research activities will be bundled here. The research center offers a space concept that connects teams and provides suitable areas for different needs. A multi-space office concept offers ideal collaboration conditions in creative and meeting rooms, among other things. Furthermore, the building is equipped with laboratories and presentation rooms.
Fast-Make Electrification Research Center
2. The Fast-Make Electrification Research Center (f-merc), where parts for electrical components such as electric motors or power converters as well as parts for gas turbines are manufactured within 3-4 weeks using modern production methods (including sintering, casting preparation, forming and additive manufacturing). Together with the test center (see point 3), rapid innovation cycles are made possible, into which findings from the basic research center flow directly. In cooperation with the research center and other partners, a rapid iteration of the production technologies is carried out in parallel.
3. An integrated Test Center, in which system and component tests are carried out. The building equipment includes test facilities and laboratory equipment. There will be a total of eight test stands, with testing taking place at sea level and/or under flight conditions.
The test center is closely coordinated with the new DLR Institute for Electrified Aircraft Propulsion Systems in Cottbus and is partly shared.
An integrated digital infrastructure (digital chesco) connects the research center, f-merc and the test center with each other and with the outside world, e.g. with partner institutes or external companies. Data and information are exchanged to represent development and manufacturing processes in the digital twin while ensuring data security and intellectual property protection. The Digital chesco provides computers or digital twins that interact directly with the physical world as well as digital infrastructure for technology development, manufacturing processes and experimental validation.
The interaction of the domains is illustrated in Figure 1.
1One of the pilot applications is the specific project to play a key role in shaping the climate neutrality of air transport by the year 2050. chesco provides the development, manufacturing and testing facilities for the development of innovative solutions to reduce CO2 emissions in aviation. This infrastructure makes it possible, among other things, to implement EU research projects within the framework of Clean Aviation. In its "Strategic research and innovation agenda" (SRIA), the "Proposed European Partnership for Clean Aviation" outlines an integrated demonstration plan for the development of hybrid-electric powered regional aircraft by 2030. chesco can contribute significantly to the research infrastructure required for this. Synergies with other applications will follow. The result is a sustainable utilization concept for decades to come.