Prof. Dr. Rolf Bracke

Director of Fraunhofer IEG

Prof. Rolf Bracke has been institute director of Fraunhofer IEG together with Prof. Mario Ragwitz since December 2019. Previously, he built up the International Geothermal Center Bochum (GZB) as a NRW joint research institution of science and industry since 2003 as founding director and chairman of the board. GZB was transferred to Fraunhofer IEG on January 1st, 2020 as the Bochum part of the institute. Within Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, Rolf Bracke coordinates research on the dimension of heat for the institutes of the Fraunhofer Energy Alliance and the Cluster of Excellence Integrated Energy Systems.

As a full professor at Ruhr University Bochum, he holds the Department of Geothermal Energy Systems at Faculty of Mechanical Engineering. There, the geologist, who holds a doctorate and degree from RWTH Aachen University, sees himself as a bridge builder between the natural sciences and engineering. Previously, he held the professorship for Geothermal and Environmental Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Bochum University of Applied Sciences from 2002 to 2020 and was Vice President for Research between 2006 and 2009.

Rolf Bracke is intensively involved in the international scientific community. He was director of the International Geothermal Association (IGA) between 2013 and 2020 and is a member of the Executive Committee of the European Energy Research Alliance (Geothermal Program). He has led a variety of research projects on energy transition in the European and global space and advises international institutions such as the World Bank, the United Nations, Central American Integration System (SICA) or European institutions on energy issues.

His central research interests lie in the transformation of mining-related technologies in the development of climate-neutral energy systems. In 2020, he was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany for his work on structural change.

    • Drilling technologies
    • Geothermal energy systems
    • Ruhr2030 Award 2009; Initiativkreis Ruhrgebiet
    • Research Award 2015; Hochschule Bochum
    • Method for the separate use of a liquid jet within a liquid by means of a generated V-Shroud (pending). Shahin Jamali, Viktor Hartung, Sarah Jasper, Volker Wittig, Rolf Bracke
    • Vorrichtung zur tiefenorientierten Entnahme von Fluidproben aus dem grundwassererfüllten Erdreich unter in-situ Druckverhältnissen (HYDROP-System) / Multi-Level sampling of fluids within the groundwatersaturated zone by preservation of the natural in-situ hydrostatic pressure. Schutzansprüche: Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt – Gebrauchsmuster-Nr. 201 11 540.9
    • Bohrgestänge, Bohrspitze für ein Bohrgestänge und Verfahren zur Durchführung von Bohrungen im Erdreich. Schutzansprüche: Internationale Patentanmeldung Nr. PCT/EP2007/006968 – WO 2008/017452 A1 – Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt; Patent: DE 10 2006 037110 B4 2016.05.04
  • Hochschule Bochum

    • Professor for Geothermal and Environmental Engineering (since 09 / 2002), Institute for Energy, Water and Environment / Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
    • Vice President for Research, Development and Transfer (03 / 2006 to 05 / 2009)

    Ruhr University Bochum

    • Member of the research department Subsurface Modeling and Engineering
    • Member of the research department Closed Carbon Cycle Economyy

    International Geothermal Centre (GZB) e.V., Bochum:

    • International University Industrial Research Centre
    • Managing Director (since 2006)
  • International Geothermal Association (IGA)

    • Board member (since 2013)
    • Coordinator of the IGA Academy

    GZB – Wirtschaftsvereinigung Geothermie e.V.

    • Member of the board (since 2007)

    Geothermal Energy Science

    • Scientific open access journal of IGA and the German Geothermal Energy Association, by Copernicus Publications.
    • Editor-in-chief (until 2017)

    Polish Academy of Science – Mineral and Energy Economy Research Institute

    • Member of the Advisory Editorial Board Energy Policy Journal

    European Energy Research Alliance (EERA) – Joint Geothermal Program

    • Member of the Steering Committee
  • Hochschule Bochum

    • Professorship and Department of Geothermal and Environmental Technologies, Department of Civil Engineering
    • BSc-Program "Civil and Environmental Engineering" (de): Geology and Geothermal Energy Systems (Introduction), Energy Supply, Environmental Engineering
    • MSc-Program "Geothermal Energy Systems" (en): Geothermal Systems for Heating, Cooling and Electricity Production; Drilling Technologies; Hydro- and Geochemistry

    IGA Academy

    • Coordinator for international training courses


    • Universidad de El Salvador: concept for a Center of Excellence for Central America. Development of 20-week training program / diploma curriculum for geothermal energy.

    Training courses abroad

    • Drilling technology and low enthalpy geothermal technologies in Chile, Argentina, Turkey and Central America (IDB, WB / IFC, EU, GIZ).
  • Education

    • 2011 TU Darmstadt, Germany: MSc program Tropical Hydrogeology and Environmental Engineering (for ASIIN).
    • 2013 University of El Salvador, El Salvador: graduate program in geothermal energy (for Inter-American Development Bank).
    • 2015 Africa Centre of Excellence, Nairobi, Kenya: educational concept and research facilities (for UN EP).
    • ongoing: DAAD, German Academic Exchange Service


    • ongoing: University of Chile, Chile: Competence Center for Geothermal Energy of Los Andes (CEGA), Member of the International Supervisory Board
    • ongoing: European Commission; Executive Agency for Innovation and Networks (INEA); Evaluator in FP6, FP7, H2020
    • ongoing: DFG, German Research Foundation