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Hof Energy Symposium 2023 a complete success: conference on the energy transition brings together industry and science

Last Wednesday, November 22, 2023, the Kompetenznetzwerk Wasser und Energie e.V. and the Institute for Hydrogen and Energy Technology (iwe) at Hof University of Applied Sciences hosted the 4th Hof Energy Symposium 2023 at the Institute for Information Systems on the Hof campus. The organizers were able to welcome around 100 participants this year.

The Hof Energy Symposium is a specialist symposium with an integrated specialist and poster exhibition aimed at experts from the field of energy technology. Hydrogen applications are also a central focus of the symposium. Legal perspectives on regulations and funding opportunities in the energy sector as well as innovations in the energy sector were also covered.

“From 50% renewable share in the power grid, we no longer need nuclear power plants, we need residual load power plants” – with this impulse Prof. Dr.-Ing. Tobias Plessing, Director of iwe, opened the one-day conference. Eva Döhla, Mayor of the City of Hof, welcomed the participants with a word of welcome. Sebastian Auer, 3rd Mayor of the City of Hof and representative of the competence network, acted as moderator throughout the day.

The participants of the Hof Energy Symposium 2023 in front of the building of the Institute for Information Systems (iisys) on the Hof campus; Image: Hof University of Applied Sciences

In their presentations, the speakers addressed topics at the cutting edge of the energy transition: the latest innovations in energy supply and efficiency, refrigeration technology and hydrogen applications, as well as the challenges of municipal heat planning. For the first time, the presentations were supplemented by a scientific poster exhibition in order to focus more on the scientific character of the event in addition to industrial practice. The winner of the Best Poster Award was Lena Gretsch, project engineer at BtX energy GmbH, with her poster contribution on hydrogen from biogenic residues. Institute Director Prof. Plessing presented the winner with the award in the form of a sustainable wooden trophy on the evening of the event.

In the exhibition, 12 companies from the energy sector presented their latest innovations, from efficient hydrogen burners to heat pumps.

“The large number of participants and exhibitors this year clearly shows how hard we are working together here on the regional energy transition. The Energy Symposium has become like a family reunion,” says Dr. Andy Gradel, Deputy Director of iwe.

The organizers would like to thank all participants and speakers for the lively discussions and the many talks on possible joint future projects. However, repeated thanks and get well soon were especially due to research assistant Katrin Müller for the lion’s share of the planning of the event, which she was unfortunately unable to enjoy herself due to the flu epidemic, but nevertheless coordinated from her bed.

About the Kompetenznetzwerk Wasser und Energie e.V.:

The aim of the Kompetenznetzwerk Wasser und Energie e.V. is to bundle the abundant expertise available in the region in the areas of water and energy, to network companies and to further expand the competence region. The network currently consists of over 40 members from companies, local authorities, schools, universities and other relevant organizations and regional players. The aim is still to implement joint innovation projects, develop tailor-made system solutions, promote the exchange of technical experience and initiate measures to secure the next generation at all qualification levels. Today, the competence network is an indispensable component of the water and energy competence of Upper Franconia. The areas of water and energy – and, inseparably linked to this, the environment – give the region a sharper profile and a unique selling point. In order to further expand the success of the water, energy and environmental sector in the region, the innovative strength of the companies and the regional research and development performance must be strengthened, young talent and skilled workers must be recruited in a targeted manner and effective image work must be carried out both internally and externally. This is achieved through general networking, the organization and implementation of our own specialist events, as well as participation in relevant third-party events.

Dr. Andy Gradel
Kirsten Hölzel

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