The scientific projects of the CRC 1073 are organized into three topical areas that are related to the three fundamental aspects of energy conversion, the loss of energy due to dissipation (topical area A), the conversion of light to electrical energy (topical area B) and the storage of harvested energy in chemical components (topical area C).

Topical Area A: Control of dissipation

Project group A will continue to study electronic and vibrational dissipation channels using a variety of primary excitations, i.e. mechanical, optical, electrical, atomic collisions and heat. Two key scientific questions underlie the joint research program.
The central questions are:
- Which kind of microscopic degrees of freedom dominate the path to equilibrium?
- How far can dissipation be controlled by tuning phonon and electron states or by active intervention?

Topical Area B: Conversion of optical excitations

The B projects will continue studying the conversion of optically induced excitations in systems with tunable correlations and will focus in the second CRC period on two material systems: (i) perovskite oxides and (ii) molecular metal complexes.
The central questions are:
- What is the nature of optical excitations in systems with strong electron-vibrational and magnetic correlations?
- Can photon energy conversion be controlled by tuning excitations and electron-phonon, electron-electron, electron-spin interactions in correlated systems?

Topical Area C: Photon and electron driven reactions

Project group C jointly studies atomic scale mechanisms of energy storage in chemical bonds via multistep reactions using real time and atomic scale studies.
The central questions are:
- What is the exact nature and lifetime of the active states during electron and photon driven reactions?
- What is the role of correlations in multi-step charge transfer reactions?
- Can such reactions be controlled via tuning correlations and by active intervention?