As part of the German National Research Data Infrastructure (NFDI), the consortium, NFDI4Ing, aims to develop, disseminate, standardise and provide methods and services to make engineering research data FAIR: Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Re-usable.

Project Scope

The aim of the IEK-3 led sub-project "Ellen" is to support engineers in their search for data by facilitating established research methodologies as potential data sources, raising their level of integration and reducing the amount of time required for their application. To this end, in the case of unavailable data sets, scientifically recognised methodological concepts and their software implementations will be made available to generate the missing data. Since neither journal articles nor software codes are suitable to be used as a guide to the implementation of a methodology, conceptual and machine-interpretable workflow descriptions will serve this purpose within the research data landscape.

NFDI4Ing Project Overview (Copyright: IEK-3)


- Support scientists’ data retrieval processes by providing the methodological knowledge and the technical means to generate sought data in case it is not found to be available or well suited.

- Develop a semantic framework to enable the representation and reuse of: 
a) Scientifically recognized methodological knowledge in form of semantically enriched and machine-interpretable concepts. 
b) Software implementations, software workflows and data sets.

- Enable the engineering community as well as infrastructure service providers to provide and utilize knowledge-based data storage and retrieval services.

Interim Results

- A metadata framework was developed that makes it possible to link text publications, data sets and software models at the semantic level.

- The framework was embedded in the structures of the Open Research Knowledge Graph (ORKG, https://www.orkg.org/) via metadata templates and supports the cross-format description, retrieval and evaluation of research data.

- A link to the NFDI4Ing terminology service (https://terminology.nfdi4ing.de/) has been established so that individual metainformation can be stored in an ontology-compliant manner.

- With a special focus on the engineering domain of energy systems research, the Open Energy Ontology (OEO, https://openenergy-platform.org/ontology/) was integrated into the terminology service as the domain ontology of the research field.

- Likewise, an Observatory has been established for this domain of the engineering community based on the ORKG to serve as a platform for researchers to collaboratively collect, network, and curate research content in general and research software in particular. https://www.orkg.org/orkg/observatory/Energy_System_Analysis

More detailed information about the project is available at the:


Project partners are available at the following link: https://nfdi4ing.de/about-us/members-participants/


October, 2020 - September, 2025

The project proposal may be accessed at the following link.

Last Modified: 20.07.2023