Grenoble INP Rubrique Institut 2022

Carnot Institute “Énergies du futur”

The Carnot Institute “Énergies du futur” was created in 2007 by Grenoble INP in conjunction with the Joseph Fourier University, CNRS and CEA. A total of 16 laboratories are connected to this Institute which has become a hotspot for new energy technologies drawing on its dynamism and the strength of its network. Its aim is to develop innovative solutions in the field of new energy technologies.


  • To develop research and its applications over the entire energy production and use chain for both traditional and renewable energy
  • To bring together the skills of laboratories and businesses in the sector in order to meet the challenges of renewing energy policies and reducing greenhouse gases
  • To expedite the development of new technologies and introduce new performing technological solutions onto the markets in order to place France at the level of European leaders in photovoltaics

Key figures

  • An active portfolio of 600 patents, 213 of which in 2012
  • 703 publications in 2012
  • A consolidated budget of € 130 M
  • € 80 M in partner research profit
  • € 67 M in direct partnerships with industrial companies in 2012
  • The confidence of approximately 140 businesses, a third of which SMEs/very small businesses
  • More than 100 research contracts per year


  • The University Campus in St Martin d'Hères


  • Approved for four years in March 2007
  • Renewed in 2011

The players

  • Grenoble INP is the project initiator in cooperation with the Joseph Fourier University, CNRS and CEA

Technical laboratories

750 researchers with complementary skills from 16 CEA Grenoble, CNRS, Grenoble INP and Joseph Fourier University laboratories
  • The Carnot Institute relies on their skills and expertise:
  • G2Elab: Laboratoire de génie électrique de Grenoble (Laboratory of electrical engineering)
  • Institut Néel: Consortium of research for the emergence of advanced technologies
  • LEGI / CREMHYG: Laboratoire des écoulements géophysiques et industriels / Centre de recherche et d'essais de machines hydrauliques de Grenoble (Laboratory of geophysical and industrial flows / Centre of hydraulic machinery research and testing in Grenoble)
  • LEPMI: Laboratoire d'électrochimie et de physico-chimie des matériaux et des interfaces (Laboratory of electrochemistry and physics-chemistry of materials and interfaces)
  • LGP2: Laboratoire du génie des procédés papetiers (Laboratory of pulp and paper sciences and graphic arts)
  • LMGP: Laboratoire des matériaux et du génie physique (Laboratory of materials and physical engineering)
  • LPSC: Laboratoire de physique subatomique et de cosmologie (Laboratory of subatomic physics and cosmology)
  • SIMAP: Laboratoire de sciences et ingénierie des matériaux et procédés (Laboratory of materials sciences and engineering and processes)

Two departments of CEA/LITEN (unit responsible for developing new energy technologies) are involved:
  • The Department of Solar Technologies which aggregates 4 laboratories:
    • Laboratory of solar components (LCS)
    • Laboratory of solar systems (L2S)
    • Laboratory of solar integration (LIS)
    • Laboratory of thermal systems (GRETHE / LETH)
  • The Department of Nanomaterial Technologies and its 4 laboratories:
    • Laboratory of hybrid components (LCH)
    • Laboratory of components for energy (LCE)
    • Laboratory of tracer technologies (L2T)
    • Laboratory of surface technologies (LTS)

Taking things a step further

Although its core business is energy, the Carnot Institute “Énergies du futur” also has strong expertise in micro and nanotechnologies, materials, mechanical engineering and processes, transport and chemistry. As a cross-functional and multi-disciplinary institution, it is able to control complex technologies.

Furthermore, many projects initiated by the laboratories at the Carnot Institute “Énergies du futur” were approved and funded by the Tenerrdis cluster, through five action programmes in particular; management of networks, hydraulics, hydrogen and fuel cells, solar energy and buildings and biomass. The laboratories now have high performance equipment and instruments allowing them to model, develop and characterise materials and systems.

The Carnot Institute “Énergies du futur” is able to call on a network of scientific excellence which allows it to transfer successful technologies and spin-offs. It also has experience with industrial partnerships ranging from major groups to small businesses. It is no surprise that this forward looking institute turned its efforts towards university training and techniques.