Three pillars for research

The TU Ilmenau sees itself as a research-strong university that is committed to basic and applied research in designated areas, provides research services at the highest national and international level, and promotes interdisciplinarity and inter-faculty cooperation in research and teaching. It follows the ideas of the Humboldtian ideal of education and is aware of the social framework conditions as well as its role as a driver of innovation for the region. In accordance with its mission statement, a fundamental goal of the TU Ilmenau is the development of an attractive, internationally recognized research location. Not least against the background of current social developments, the TU Ilmenau is faced with new challenges, which primarily concern the further internationalisation of research, the bundling of scientific competences in interdisciplinary alliances, the intensification of the promotion of young researchers and equal opportunities as well as the transfer of knowledge and innovation to society. The research strategy is intended to develop and expand the necessary structuresand thus secure the future viability of the TU Ilmenau.

Profile lines of the TU Ilmenau

Fields of action within the strategy

The research strategy identifies the following fields of action:

  • Recruitment and promotion of young researchers
  • Research fields and research profile
  • Relationship between basic and applied research
  • Scientific environment and non-university institutions
  • Internationalization
  • Good scientific practice and quality management
  • Central Facilities
  • Research-related services

Profile lines at a glance

In a transparent process, the university defines profile lines as interdisciplinary subject areas of basic research in which departments of TU Ilmenau demonstrate special research strength by means of strategic and interdisciplinary cooperation and thus support the reputation of the entire university. The Senate of TU Ilmenau established the following profile lines on 10 April 2018:

Functional Materials and Technologies

Many functions in technical products depend significantly on the properties of the materials used and the manufacturing processes required to produce them. The TU Ilmenau is strong in research in the development of new materials and in the optimisation of manufacturing processes. Both are carried out with a focus on application-oriented issues in business, industry and society. The focus of the investigations is on the smallest imaginable structures (micro- and nanostructures), their mechanisms of action on a large scale, and their reliable and safe functioning in daily life.

Intelligent sensing and precision metrology

In order to be able to carry out technical investigations at all on the smallest imaginable structures, one needs particularly precise measurement methods and procedures. At TU Ilmenau, scientists are working on the question of how to use physical effects for particularly precise and reliable recording of measured variables such as length, force, pressure, temperature, frequency, voltage, power, etc. in sensor systems. Using modern computer technology, measurement procedures are automated. This results in intelligent sensor systems that specifically support the user in the acquisition of relevant information.

Complex systems and data-intensive engineering

By combining sensors (measurement data acquisition), computer technology (measurement data processing, data management, information retrieval) and control technology (use of information), technical products (machines, devices) can be automated, monitored and controlled. The more complex the tasks of a technical product, the more complex its description, development and control. However, complex systems also include the economy and the media in their exploration of cause and effect. Only through the intensive use of digital data is a holistic description of complex systems possible. TU Ilmenau researches and develops the necessary algorithms, methods and technologies for this.

Fields of application and technology

These profile lines are addressed both in a basic research-oriented manner and in connection with specific fields of application and technology. These include assistance systems, energy systems technology, life science technologies, media, people & society, mobile communication, micro- and nanosystems technology, mobile autonomous and networked systems, and production technology and automation.

Research at TU Ilmenau takes place at the faculties as well as at the inter-faculty institutes.



Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology

Faculty of Computer Science and Automation

Faculty of Mechanical Engineering

Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences

Faculty of Economics and Media



Institute for Automotive and Production Engineering

Thuringian Energy Research Institute (ThEFI)

Institute for Life Science Technologies (LisTec)

Institute for Media and Mobile Communication

Institute for Micro- and Nanotechnologies

Institute for Materials Technology