Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM

Annual report 2018/2019

Elastocaloric heat pumps, color change based sensors for fire gas detection, underwater laser scanning, component inspection in free fall: Our annual report will give you an insight into selected research projects. We hope you enjoy browsing though and discovering our innovations.

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»We measure
fast and precisely.«

Fraunhofer IPM develops tailor-made measuring techniques and systems for industry.

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We keep you up to date

If you wish, we will send you regular news about research results, events and our range of services.

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Note on cooperation in the face of the Corona pandemic

Dear customers and project partners,

The current situation presents us with serious restrictions in private and also in business life. We support the nationwide strategies to contain the virus and comply with the guidelines recommended by the authorities. In addition, we are taking numerous additional measures to protect the health of our employees and thus of society as a whole.

Despite the restrictions, the institute continues to operate: a large part of our staff works from home, but can still be reached by phone and e-mail as usual. Another part of our staff works in the institute's laboratories and workshops temporarily or in shifts. Since personal meetings are currently not allowed to take place, digital tools help us to relocate them into the virtual space. In this way, we will be able to remain productive during the weeks ahead, and we will be very happy to stay in touch with you!

We wish you, your relatives and friends health and all the best.

Prof Karsten Buse, Executive Director


Measuring | Monitoring | Optimizing


Business Unit

Production Control

We analyze surfaces and 3D structures of components quickly and with micrometer precision. This means that 100 percent production control in real-time is possible.


Business Unit

Object and
Shape Detection

We detect the three-dimensional shape and position of objects and large structures at high speed and with high precision. Measurements are taken predominantly from moving platforms.


Business Unit

Gas and Process

We develop and manufacture measurement systems for gas and liquid analysis which feature high precision and reliability even under extreme conditions. The scope ranges from laser spectrometers for exhaust gas analysis to energy-efficient gas sensor for  food quality monitoring.


Business Unit

Thermal Energy

We manufacture and optimize materials with special physical properties. These materials form the basis for systems for magnetic cooling or thermoelectric energy harvesting.


Laser scanners to aid in detecting explosive ordnance on the seabed

World War II left its mark on the seas, with around 1.6 million tons of ammunition and explosive ordnance from this period remaining in German marine waters alone. As part of the LUXOR research project, Fraunhofer IPM is teaming up with international research partners to develop an automated, digital system that will facilitate the identification of explosive ordnance on the seabed and improve the safety and efficiency of its removal.
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Fraunhofer starts development of refrigerant-free, energy-efficient electrocaloric heat pumps

Heat pumps play a decisive role in the energy transition: Sustainably generated electricity provides heat in winter and a good climate in summer. Nowadays, heat pumps work almost exclusively on the basis of compressor technology. Compressors require harmful refrigerants, the use of which will be restricted even more by law in the future. In the Fraunhofer ElKaWe lighthouse project, six Fraunhofer Institutes are developing highly efficient electrocaloric heat pumps, which do without harmful refrigerants.
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Federal Highway Research Institute BASt uses road surface scanner from Fraunhofer IPM for new assessment tool

The Pavement Profile Scanner PPS-Plus from Fraunhofer IPM is part of the latest measuring vehicle MESAS of the Federal Highway Research Institute BASt. The research vehicle records the condition of road surfaces and the substance of the asphalt surface and thus provides the basis for optimum maintenance planning. During test runs, MESAS has already successfully measured more than 11,000 kilometers of the federal trunk road network. Now regular operation starts.
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A cooling system without harmful refrigerants

A discovery from 1917 becomes viable for the future. A team of researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM is developing efficient magnetocaloric cooling systems that make do without harmful refrigerants. The esearchers hope to achieve 50 percent of the maximum efficiency level with their process. Comparable existing magnetocaloric systems reach only approximately 30 percent.
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Press Releases
by Fraunhofer IPM

Stay informed about current research, events or general news.


Scientific Publications

We regularly publish our research results in scientific journals and specialist journals.


Fraunhofer IPM

Heidenhofstrasse 8
79110 Freiburg, Germany
Phone + 49 761 8857 0
Fax + 49 761 8857 224


Annual Report 2018/2019


We keep you up to date

If you like, we will regularly send you news about research results, events and our range of services.