Research projects

Discover the unknown, push the limits, develop the perfectly new, do pioneering work. Our research projects show what is currently moving and driving

Thomas Neidhold, Head of Software Development

R&D Activities

ESI ITI is a preferred cooperation partner for research and development projects in industries, universities and research institutes.. Here you find a selection from our current project list.


The idea behind the CloudFlow concept is to make Cloud Computing available for engineering workflows. The aim is to give engineers access to cloud-based services in various fields like CAD, CAM, CAE (CFD), systems and PLM, which can be combined via HPC resources to form networking workflows. Today, work processes are an important basis for the development of contemporary products showing an ever increasing complexity of geometries, mechanics, electronics and software applications. What such highly complex products need is multidisciplinary simulation, simulation in the loop and thoroughly orchestrated workflows with an eye to the interoperability of data and services. CloudFlow is a joint project of seven partners: ITI, Arctur, CARSA, JOTNE, Missler, Numeca, and StellbaHydro. Furthermore, the project can rely on the input of four renowned research institutes DFKI, SINTEF, University of Nottingham , and Fraunhofer , which are also members of the consortium. The project is supported by the European Commission with more than EUR 6 million and will end 2017.

Energy Technology

The focus of this project lies on the analysis of steam power processes and combined gas and steam processes with CO2 capture under conditions of highly fluctuating regenerative supply. The goal is to evaluate coal-driven steam power plants with and without CO2 capture and storage across the entire load range, to identify limits and limiting components and to analyze optimization potential of all processes involved. The analyses conducted in the DYNCAP project for a power plant’s load range of 40 to 100 % have been extended in order to also take the increased proportion of renewable energy into account. This includes the representation of light load operations and start-up and shutdown sequences. Project partners are the Institute for Energy Technology, Thermal Fluid Power and Control Engineering from the Hamburg-Harburg University of Technology as well as XRG Simulation, TLK Thermo, ITI and E.ON Technologies. The project is funded by COORETEC, an initiative of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

The "enerMAT" project is focused on the elaboration of new concepts and software tools for the design and implementation of energy-saving building control systems and automation solutions. ITI's project partners are: FASA AG, Provedo Software GmbH, NSC GmbH, and the Department EAS of Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS. During the next three years the five partners are going to develop model-based methods intended to support efficient design, optimisation and testing of energy management systems for buildings. The project is supported with about EUR 4.5 million by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi).

The focus of the EnTool:CoSim project lies on coupling runtime-optimized models for energetic and HVAC-related building simulations with simulation models of plant and control components. To support and intensify the knowledge transfer from research to practical applications, the EnTool:CoSim project promotes the integration of simulation tools through co-simulation and model exchange. Complex models which used to be almost exclusively confined to the research lab can now be successfully applied to practical scenarios. The EnTool:CoSim project and the EnTool:BIM project are both part of the EnTool platform pilot running for three years. The project is supported by EA Systems Dresden, das Fraunhofer Society, ITI and the Dresden University of Technology.

MODRIO is a European ITEA2 Research Project for a period of three years and with a budget of EUR 19.5 million. It involves 38 partners from 6 countries. The objective of MODRIO is to extend the application of modern modelling and simulation tools to system operation in the transport and energy sectors. In particular, it is intended to substantially improve the operative use of power plants, transport systems and wind turbines over their entire life cycle in terms of efficiencies, lower emissions, higher safety standards and flexibility. The project partners are working on the development of standards and methods as well as a modelling and analysis environment allowing non-linear models to be used in normal operation to the immediate benefit of industrial players.

Mobile Maschinery

The construction site of the future is the focus of the joint research project "Bauen 4.0". ESI Germany pioneers the development of concepts for the efficient interaction of simulation models of construction machinery with a dynamic virtual environment:

ESI ITI together with IBAF GmbH and the Technical University of Dresden (TDU) run a joint project for the development of a novel computing library based on the Discrete Element Method (DEM) in SimulationX in order to implement a new quality level of computing methods for particle simulation of bulk materials handled by construction equipment. A key feature of the envisaged solution is to couple the DEM software LIGGGHTS entirely to the multiphysical simulation environment of SimulationX. IBAF GmbH is responsible for providing a knowledge-based preprocessor with parametrisation function allowing future users to get involved already in the development phase. For ease of use, the TUD develops a specific post-processing module for virtual-reality applications offering completely new ways of interaction. The project is supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and scheduled for a period of five years.

ESI ITI together with the Institute for Processing Machines and Mobile Machinery of the Faculty of Mechanical Science and Engineering of the Technical University of Dresden have the intention to create, parametrise and validate novel models for tyre-ground contact and to integrate them on a modular basis in the SimulationX tool. The project result for ESI ITI is to provide a new calculation method and computing tool for a large group of users.

The goal of this research project is the application-oriented development of algorithms and HPC software for multiscale simulations of machinery in the OpenModelica development environment. The principle idea of the project is to use mathematical and syntactic context information of sub-models to create a coupled overall model in a software application which can be simulated with highly parallel efficiency despite its multiscale properties. HPCOM is a joint project between Bosch Rexroth, ITI and the Dresden University of Technology and is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Industrial Machinery

The project involves the development of an application-oriented model library for complex machinery assemblies and uses the example of a linear feed axis with all its required sub-models as a basis. The library can be configured for all sorts of real-time capabilities and allows for SiL and HiL simulations for virtual commissioning. It also includes relevant functional test and failure cases with the appropriate interfaces. The model library enables the user to create models more quickly with a minimum of special knowledge required, which reduces potential risks and the amount of time and costs involved. The goal is to make use of pre-configured validated models with varying complexity and to benefit from the SiL/HiL capabilities and the included test cases. The project is a collaboration between ITI and the Institute for Machine Tools and Control Engineering at the Dresden University of Technology. 

The ROMESA project aims at integrating wear and aging effects into system models in order to be able to assess reliability and potential failure causes of assemblies through simulation before going into production. This involves a great deal of different failure causes to be described with mathematical models. Based on the simulation results, it is possible to automatically optimize weak points in the system and allow for a resource-friendly and robust design process for mechatronic assemblies. Funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the project is a cooperation between Dynardo, ITI, the Institute of Electromechanical and Electronic Design at the Dresden University of Technology and Johnson Electric Germany. 

The project evolves around solutions for software-based support for early stages of product development in order to reduce the time-to-market and thus enable companies to secure market shares early on. The improved software support can increase a product’s overall quality and minimize the necessary resources for product revisions. It is the plan to create three software applications for process and tool integration of system specifications and system simulation into a PLM system. It is a joint project as part of the Central Innovation Program for SMEs funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

Medical Technology and Pharmacology

In collaboration with Fraunhofer IWS, ESI ITI developed the “Microfluidics” library for dynamic simulations and dimensioning of microfluidic systems in SimulationX during the ZIM Project SimFluNet, funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. They help in particular with simulations of microperfusion and lab-on-a-chip systems as lumped element models. Microperfusion and lab-on-a-chip systems are intended to replace animal testing in toxicology and pharmacology in the future.

Seemless development and integration of systems

ACOSAR is the response to a crucial market demand in various industries for homogeneous and seamless (virtual) system development and system validation. The objective is the definition of a standard for an interoperable, tool independent co-simulation interface (DCP: Distributed Co-Simulation Interface). This new interface will lead to an effortless integration of non-real time systems, soft real-time and real-time systems via a unified network protocol. The underlying idea of ACOSAR is tied to the FMI standard. The project involves AVL, BOSCH, dSPACE, ETAS, ESI ITI, Groupe RENAULT, MEDS, MicroNova, PORSCHE, SIEMENS, TWT and Volkswagen as well as the Ilmenau University of Technology, the University of Hannover and the RWTH Aachen University. This project is part of ITEA 3 which belongs to the cluster program of the European research initiative EUREKA.

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