For the success of the German Energiewende, it is mandatory to develop economically efficient energy storage systems and to design and link important infrastructures for energy transmission and distribution. Supply of energy based mostly on renewable energy sources requires three important new technical solutions. First, adequate energy storage to compensate volatile energy generation and to bridge seasonal fluctuations in supply and demand, second, technologies and infrastructures to master the upcoming challenges of energy transmission and distribution, and, third, a much better link between different energy carriers (e.g. gas, electricity) to secure reliable, flexible, efficient, and economic energy supply. These are the guidelines for the R&D topics in this programme. The main research topics include many technical options and aim for prompt application, eco-friendly manufacturing, high efficiency, and safe and reliable system integration. The programme has important links and contributes to the joint energy storage programme of the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA).