The research subjects of SET cover a broad range. Topics vary from technical subjects– such as energy from biomass, wave energy or the construction of wind turbines – to more socially orientated topics, such as the introduction of energy efficient stoves in developing countries,or the development of energy policies. The following research topics are examples of the SET programme:


The research in our Energy Technology Group focuses on the thermal conversion and application of biofuels. In our well-equipped laboratory, we study the fundamental aspects of combustion, gasification and pyrolysis of biomass, waste and other fuels. Catalysis for sustainability is one of the central themes of our research group Catalytic processes and materials. Catalysis is multidisciplinary and connects many themes, from inorganic chemistry for catalyst preparation, to surface science, physical chemistry and reactor and process design. 

Our research group Sustainable Process Technology focuses on creating and perfecting new thermal-chemical routes for the production of biomass-derived solid, gaseous and liquid fuels for renewable and sustainable energy.

Fuel cells and blue energy

Our Membrane Technology Group focuses on the multi-disciplinary topic of membrane science and technology to control mass transfer through interfaces.

Micro-CHP, heat pumps and heat storage systems

The research in our Thermal Engineering group primarily centres on thermal conversion processes for industrial applications, and involves the disciplines thermodynamics, transport phenomena, thermo-chemistry and fluid mechanics.

Solar energy

The energy-related research in our Design Engineering group focuses on sustainable product development with renewable energy technologies, with a strong emphasis on the development of applications of photovoltaic (PV) solar energy technologies, for instance PV systems and modules, solar-powered boats, concentrating PV and PV products for indoor use.

Sustainable Energy and Society

The Centre for Studies in Technology and Sustainable Development (CSTM) is a department within the Institute for Innovation and Governance Studies (IGS) of the University of Twente. The focus in teaching and research is on energy, water and climate change.

Wind energy

The chair of Production Technology focuses on the optimization of both the manufacturing process and the performance of lightweight materials in structural applications. The research conducted by our Engineering Fluid Dynamics group deals with theoretical, numerical and experimental studies, aimed at all applications in Mechanical Engineering. In particular, research focuses on the fields of rotating flow machines, aero-acoustics, aerodynamics, gasdynamics and flows with phase transitions, fluid-structure interaction and aero-elasticity, thin-film flows and bio-physical flows.

Energy efficiency

Design, Production & Management offers five possibilities for your Master’s theses within the field of energy efficiency: electric cars, motor management systems forelectric cars, energy-efficient buildings and electricity storage.

Materials and systems

The research aim of Inorganic Materials Science is to develop new materials with novel advanced properties, in which the functionality is controlled by nanoscale structures, leading to improved energy applications.

Energy, materials and systems

The main focus of the research chair Energy, Materials and Systems (EMS) is on sustainable energy. This chair has the ambition of developing technologies, materials and systems that will play a key role in our future energy chains. The scientists here investigate the application of superconductivity in the power grid – for example, superconducting cables for transport of electric power– as well as the application of cryogenic technologies and materials for liquid energy carriers, such as liquid natural gas and hydrogen.

Smart grids

The research group Computer Architecture for Embedded Systems (CAES) focuses on streaming applications in the high-performance high-tech domain (for example, phased array antenna systems, medical image processing and signal processing on board of satellites) and ICT for energy management (for example, smart grids).

Solar fuels

Research activities of the Photocatalytic Synthesis Group focus on the conversion of solar energy into chemical energy,with a view to driving thermodynamically uphill reactions, such as the synthesis of fuel by CO2 activation.

Water footprint and energy

One of the focus points of the research group Water engineering and management is on the use of fresh water for all types of human consumption, such as water for energy.

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