The Institute of Applied Sustainability to the Built Environment (ISAAC) is involved in the research areas of renewable energy, rational use of energy, recovery and maintenance of the buildings, as well as in energy planning at regional and local level, taking into account the environmental and socio-economics criteria. Activities of ISAAC - that is part of the Department of Environment Building and Design - focus on three main areas: Photovoltaics, Rational and efficient use of energy in buildings and Energy planning in a sustainable development perspective.

The PV sector of SUPSI-ISAAC has several research activities and offers services in the fields of Performance testing, Life-Time testing and Energy Rating of PV modules, and design/monitoring of PV systems. It also includes a centre of competence for BIPV (Building Integrated PhotoVoltaics). The institute has set-up the first center for PV–module testing in Switzerland (accredited ISO 17025) covering the whole range of electrical, climatic and mechanical tests according to IEC– standards 61215/61646/61730. In the field of PV integrated in the built environment the institute hosts the Swiss BIPV Competence Centre that aims to combine the competences of the department of Architecture of SUPSI with those of ISAAC offering a new and appropriate approach to photovoltaics for architects. Applied research, training and professional advice are the pillars on which founds its activities. The website is one of the communication means of the Swiss BiPV Competence Centre.

The research projects are embedded in a network of partnerships with universities, government agencies, non-governmental organizations and industry, based on interdisciplinary skills.