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Philip Sterchele

Philip Sterchele


  • RLS-year 2015

CV from Philip Sterchele

Philip Sterchele

Philip Sterchele was born on January 13th, 1989 in Vipiteno/Sterzing.

After his high school graduation in 2008 Philip Sterchele studied power engineering at the University of Bologna. In the course of his studies, he cultivated an interest in matters concerning the integration of renewable energy and completed his bachelor thesis in 2011 on this subject. Furthermore he gained some first professional experience from two internships: in the photovoltaic and the hydropower sector. Thereafter Philip Sterchele studied renewable energy systems at the Technical University of Berlin, where in 2012 he has been awarded with the "Philotherm" price. In 2014 he completed his Master's course with his final thesis at the Fraunhofer Institut für Solare Energiesysteme in Freiburg. Here he worked as research assistant until 2016 in the fields of energy system modelling. In this environment he came up with the idea for his doctoral project in which he will examine the transformation of the German energy system until 2050 and particularly its need for flexibility.

Short description of the doctoral thesis:

„Flexibility options in the building sector – analysis and assessment of technology concepts with the aid of an intersectoral energy system model"

To reduce the greenhouse gas emissions for at least 80 % by 2050 compared to 1990 the German government has set itself clear objectives. Besides strategies concerning the network expansion, the development of energy storage systems and the electric mobility, especially the expansion of renewable energies must be driven forward. Concretely their share on the total gross energy consumption should increase to 18 % in 2020, 30 % in 2030, 45 % in 2040 and 60 % in 2050. In future the power supply will be characterized by the fluctuating feed of electricity from renewable sources (photovoltaics and wind power). To balance load and production and make our energy system more flexible various technological options have to be taken into account. In addition to the consideration of the power grid also the heating plays an important role. Thus, until 2050 the primary energy demand of the building sector should be reduced at least by 80 % and the remaining share must be covered by renewable energy.

The different objectives of the German government show that in order to achieve a targeted reduction of the greenhouse gas emissions there is a need for action in several areas. Any measure towards a sustainable energy supply system shouldn't be assessed individually, but in the context of the entire energy system. It is thus possible to point out the impact of different measures on the whole system and to evaluate them from a technical and economic point of view.

Through the analysis of the German energy system the general objective of this doctoral project is to attain a deeper understanding for its systemic connections. Hereby the focus is on questions regarding the need for flexibility in the energy system. It shall be investigated which technology options should be used in the future and to what extent, how these technologies interact within the energy system and in particular which costs occur. For this purpose the energy model REMod should be used and further developed. It differs from other energy system models by its detailed representation of the heating sector and the simultaneous possibility to optimize a future energy system. The overall goal of REMod is to identify a system composition which leads to the lowest possible economic costs and a defined reduction of the greenhouse gas emissions.

The doctoral project is structured according to the following priorities:

First the flexibility options for all consumption sectors within the German energy system have to be identified and characterized. This means in the mobility sector, the private households, the trade, commerce and service sector and the industry sector as well.

Subsequently framework conditions of importance for the modelling of the German energy system have to be examined. This involves political framework conditions as well as the technical and economic description of facilities and processes within the energy system.

The next step is about the further development of energy model. All technology options, physical interaction mechanisms and consumption sectors of relevance to answer the research question must be added. For example different Demand Response measures will be included for the building sector. At this point the model will be extended by the determination of the cooling energy demand.

The usage sequence of the different flexibility options within the energy system (merit order) shall be examined and assessed. For this purpose at the modelling stage technical restrictions like the theoretical potential of different technology options have to be taken into account. For example the flexibility potential of Demand Response in the industrial sector is limited by the considered processes, the assumed shifting time and the number of interventions etc.

Finally various technology scenarios and methodological approaches have to be tested, especially in the light of general future uncertainties regarding the development of the energy system. At this point a sensitivity analysis with different pricing assumptions as well as other key parameters has to be carried out.