Research and teaching, study and further education take place on the campus of the TU Ilmenau in about 70 buildings. These buildings require, among other things, a supply of energy in the form of electricity, heat, cooling, gas and water.

The energy currently used at the TU Ilmenau is already "green": electricity is sourced 100% certified from renewable sources. The buildings are heated almost exclusively with district heating; district cooling is used for the cooling required in particular by IT and research equipment. These services, sourced from the Ilmenau Heat Supply (IWV), are CO2 or "climate neutral" due to the use of renewable fuels and cogeneration, and depend only to a very limited extent on the environmentally damaging gas supply.

The TU's energy demand is concentrated in a few buildings and areas, which is also typical for a technical university: The TOP 10 of the total 70 buildings require about three quarters of the total electrical power and heating energy, in terms of cooling it is even the TOP 3. In these energetically highly relevant buildings such as the University Computer Center and the Zuse Building, essential IT services for the TU Ilmenau and the other nine state universities of Thuringia are provided and further developed. The Feynman and Meitner buildings house the university's largest technological center - the Center of Micro and Nanotechnologies (ZMN) - which is a DFG equipment center and also has the largest university clean room in Europe.

The energy-saving concept that went into effect in the winter semester 2022/23 therefore initially focused on reducing energy consumption in these two areas - IT infrastructure and services and ZMN research infrastructure. In addition, many simple and low-threshold measures (e.g., lowering room temperatures, night and weekend shutdowns) have been and are being successively implemented across the campus.

In addition to these short- and medium-term measures, TU Ilmenau is pursuing a longer-term strategy to save energy. To this end, in January 2023 the Executive Board drew up an "Energy Concept 2030", which contains the following concrete measures and is to be successively updated:

Facility Management

The university's facility management is to be further optimized in terms of energy:

Power generation

Energy generation on the campus of the TU Ilmenau is to be further expanded. The initial focus here is on photovoltaics. The basis for this is the resolution "Photovoltaic systems for state-owned real estate" passed by the Thuringian state parliament in 2016. It thus called on the state government to retrofit all suitable roofs of state-owned real estate with PV systems designed for self-consumption.

DGT will therefore gradually evaluate the roofs of buildings on the university campus for suitability for retrofitting with PV systems and push ahead with implementation in coordination with TMIL and TLBV. Initially, PV systems on the roofs of the Bionics, Feynman Building, Oeconomicum, and Grace Hopper Building will be the focus for 2023 and 2024.


Sustainability at the TU Ilmenau

In order to live up to our social responsibility and exemplary function as an international place of science, study and work and as a "Sustainable Community" and to strengthen the awareness of all university members for the topic, the Presidential Board of the TU Ilmenau has established the Task Group Sustainability.

More about Sustainability@TU Ilmenau