ALigN - Ausbau von Ladeinfrastruktur durch gezielte Netzunterstützung


ALigN aims at reducing NOx and CO2 emission in the city of Aachen by promoting electro-mobility with demand-oriented development and expansion of electric vehicle charging infrastructure.



Decarbonizing the transportation sector is essential for both achieving emission targets of “Energiewende” and improving the air quality in German cities. Electric Vehicles (EVs) are key technologies for carbon-free transportation with promising adoption rates. Commercial and municipal fleet operators, with their regular and planned trips, have the greatest leverage for NOx and CO2 reduction. To enable the diffusion of EV technology amongst these fleet operators, sufficient number of charging points must be available. Integration of an increasing number of charging points increases energy demand and presents network operators with major challenges to network utilization and stability, especially in the hotspot area.

ALigN deals with massive, demand-oriented development charging infrastructure in Aachen, while ensuring network security. This objective will be fulfilled via intelligent energy management (EM) in combination with intelligent charging infrastructure, development of a solid-state transformer, and use of battery storage.

Role of Institute for Automation of Complex Power Systems

  Concept Diagram Concept pursued in ALigN project for the demand-oriented development of charging infrastructure

Energy Management (EM) can minimize the impact of increased energy demand due to the EVs. From the network point of view, EVs are controllable loads with some degree of flexibility. By controlling the charging process, network operators can optimize the energy flows without violating the network constraints. Furthermore, this flexibility can be exploited to utilize at best the Renewable Energy Sources. The ALigN project will develop an intelligent Energy Management Concept for the grid integration of charging infrastructure to simultaneously ensure grid security and optimal utilization of existing resources in the grid. Our solution will include high-resolution forecasting algorithms to identify charging behavior for electric vehicles and renewable feed-in; and optimization models that assure network stability while meeting the charging demand.

The validation and analysis of the EM will be performed with “Controller Hardware-in-the-Loop” technology, based on the real-time simulation of the models of the charging infrastructure and the distribution grid of Aachen. Similarly, the potential and feasibility of Solid State Transformers and Battery Storage Systems will be investigated as key technologies for overcoming the grid limitations.

The findings will be projected to assess the future expansion of the charging infrastructure in Aachen.



ALigN is a joint research project lead by the city of Aachen. Grateful acknowledgement is made to BMWi (German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy) for providing financial support.

  Funded by BMWi