We don’t just ask questions about tomorrow’s air transport. We provide scientifically based answers. Today.
Bauhaus Luftfahrt is the aviation think tank from Germany. We don’t just ask questions about
tomorrow’s air transport. We provide scientifically based answers. Today. Our agile team, in mindset
and methodology, of young researchers and postdocs allows quick access in different fields of
competence (engineering, natural sciences, social sciences, and economics). This flexibility and
interdisciplinarity creates an overall system understanding and a combination capability that is
unparalleled in the national and international aviation industry. We focus on major societal and
ecological challenges of our time and identify long-term options for a sustainable and climate
neutral air transport.
Like a radar, Bauhaus Luftfahrt identifies relevant and innovative topics at an early stage. With a
high level of creativity, our researchers provide radical and disruptive ideas with a foresight and
trendsetting function for the entire aviation ecosystem (signature concepts). Initial integrated
potential analyses can be carried out as well as quick assessments in different evaluation
dimensions (technical, economic, and ecological). Fast with high output, always represented in
breadth and depth, with the highest quality standards for its own work.
Bauhaus Luftfahrt considers itself a bridge builder between science, industry, politics, and the
public. Institutionally funded, we act independently and unbiased, but also carry the insights and
findings from our outstanding research and industry network into public perception and discussion
– far beyond the boundaries of the aviation industry. Our scientific results are openly accessible
and always embedded in an overall context; we communicate the essence of complex problems and ensure
that research statements are generally understandable and comparable. In close exchange with federal
authorities, we thus support strategic decision-making in industry and politics.
The early detection of disruptive technologies and their ultimate physical performance capability is
the key to long-term, sustainable innovations in aviation. The Technology Radar of Bauhaus Luftfahrt
acts as an antenna for step-change technological advancements and radically new developments in the
domains of energy, materials, photonics, sensors, and information. In order to quantitatively
analyse and assess future technologies, a specially developed methodology based on scientific
principles is used. As guidance to the future development of sound overall concepts, performance
potentials are determined in the aeronautical context at various levels of complexity.
The air transport environment constantly changes, facing many challenges, uncertainties, and
opportunities. Within the scope of the Bauhaus Luftfahrt Trend Monitor, manifold social,
technological, economic, environmental, and political developments are captured, analysed, and
evaluated in terms of implications for various stakeholders in aviation as part of an overall
mobility system. Enabling an early and comprehensive detection mechanism and the consecutive
assessment provides insights for the aviation community and beyond regarding emerging and long-term
developments, including the future of passenger travel, potential business applications,
partnerships, or strategic consequences.
The research area “Transition to Climate Neutrality” focusses on the following research questions:
Which pathways can lead aviation to CO2 neutrality by 2050? Which emission mitigation options show
the best performance in terms of reduction potential, costs, and entry into service? How can
synergies between different mitigation options be maximised? And finally, how do changing ticket
prices and an increasing environmental awareness among passengers affect the future demand trends in
air travel? In light of such complex dynamics, scenario simulations are among the preferred methods
to better understand the underlying mechanisms and to clearly show implications of different
The research area “Future Aviation Fuels” addresses the following key questions: What quantities of
renewable fuel can be produced in the future? Which technical production pathways are available for
a long-term supply of renewable fuels? How do these pathways perform with respect to technical,
environmental, and socioeconomic criteria? And what are suitable measures to introduce the required
volumes of sustainable jet fuel into the market? Fuel options with promising long-term potentials
like advanced biofuels from residues and waste streams or synthetic fuels from solar and wind energy
represent important research topics in this context.
A holistic assessment of hydrogen as an aviation fuel is a central aim of Bauhaus Luftfahrt’s
research activities. In this context, production processes and logistic chains are analysed in order
to gauge their scalability and their ecological and economic performance. These assessments extend
to the required hydrogen-handling infrastructure and related adaptions of airport procedures.
Further, key enabling component technologies for hydrogen-powered energy and propulsion systems are
conceptually investigated. Aircraft-integrated analysis sheds light on synergies. All learnings
contribute to a refined understanding of the potential role of hydrogen with regard to aviation’s
long-term target of climate neutrality.
For long-range air transport, there is no suitable substitution potential by other transport modes.
This market segment’s development is in line with the growth of global air traffic and thereby
contributes to a significant amount of the aviation climate impact. To address the unique set of
challenges, opportunities and solutions comprehensively, the principle aspects of market- and
technology-based impacts and solutions necessitate dedicated analyses and are therefore combined in
this research area. In this context, Bauhaus Luftfahrt focusses its investigations on market
structures, business opportunities and technology improvements as well as the aircraft concept
synthesis specific to the long-range segment.
A new generation of fully electric-powered air vehicles enables completely new air mobility systems,
which provide an additional option for urban and regional short-range transport. To fully understand
the potential of such air solutions, the required ecosystem of stakeholders like users, vehicle
manufacturers, vertiport and vehicle operators, authorities, governments, and societies have to be
holistically considered, and the complementation benefits for existing transport systems have to be
analysed. To what extent conventional aviation can benefit from these developments in the area of
technologies, processes at the vertiports, flight management, regulations, certification, market
actors, and business models is subject of our ongoing research.
Advanced propulsion systems have become a key driver in overall aircraft design integration. This
research area is dedicated to the development and initial evaluation of ultra-efficient and
potentially disruptive concepts for future sustainable aero propulsion systems. Therefore,
technological developments with high relevance to propulsion systems are constantly monitored and
advanced alternative propulsion and power system configurations are conceived with a high level of
technical creativity. Based on rigorous initial concept assessments, methodological demands for
propulsion system predesign and performance synthesis are identified and recommendations for further
research and development are formulated.
The prospect of utilising significant amounts of electric energy for aircraft propulsion has opened
up a novel design space for improved vehicular efficiency. Evaluating this potential requires the
consideration of key technological advances and hurdles, infrastructural demands as well as the
material availability and life-cycle emissions of electrochemical energy storage devices.
Furthermore, studying new market opportunities and developing technical concepts to meet the key
challenges of (hybrid-)electric energy and propulsions systems – such as electric waste heat
management – contribute to a holistic understanding of the future role of (hybrid-)electric