The society order relies on infrastructure that is intelligent, efficient and environmentally friendly yet at the same time economically viable. Energy and water supply, transportation and communication are basic human needs, the provision of which ensures social cohesion.
This key area is concerned with the systemic and technological challenges of the future regarding the provision of vital resources within complex infrastructures. These challenges are divided into the following categories:
- Technologies for the provision of resources in the context of:
- The energy conversion by considering the sustainability;
- Water treatment and reuse;
- Modelling and control of systems and networks.
- System management of resources:
- Organization of the distribution of energy, water and people;
- by considering the overall economic efficiency.
In a high-tech world, energy and the environment are the key topics. Moreover, in an increasingly populous world, vital resources such as clean air and drinking water, fertile soil and sources of energy are interconnected like never before. That is why the engineering disciplines are developing innovative technological solutions focusing on energy-efficient conversion technologies and storage, water processing and clean air, and the recycling of material resources. This includes managing demand via smart grids. As well as data transfer at low data rates using powerline communication, other questions come into play, such as the stability of large, decentralized networks that allow central control only to a limited extent.