Australia Funds 13 Projects To Support Low Cost Solar Research

ARENA Shells Out $41.5 Million To Back UNSW, ANU & USYD Research Projects To Meet 30% Solar Efficiency For $0.30/W By 2030 Goal

Australia Funds 13 Projects To Support Low Cost Solar Research

Listed here are the 13 winning research projects of UNSW, USYD and ANU for the ARENA funding. (Source: ARENA)

  • UNSW, ANU and USYD have secured $41.5 million ARENA funding for 13 solar energy research projects
  • The funding will enable these projects to complete their R&D and get ready for commercialization towards meeting the national 30 30 30 goal
  • Winning projects have been selected under the 2 streams of cells and modules, and for BOM, operations and maintenance

A total of 13 research projects from the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Australian National University (ANU) and University of Sydney (USYD) have secured $41.5 million funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) to help commercialize projects that can meet the country’s goal of 30% module efficiency for $0.30/W cost at utility scale by 2030.

Dubbed 30 30 30 goal, ARENA says the goal of ultra-low cost solar will be key to scaling up the production of low-cost renewable hydrogen and decarbonizing heavy industry including low emission materials as green steel and aluminum.

Funding has been announced under 2 streams of cells and modules with $27.5 million, and for balance of system (BOM), operations and maintenance with $14 million. It had to increase the funding amount by $1.5 million due to the strength of applications that it sees as having potential to reduce the levelized cost of solar PV and improve cell and module efficiency across the 2 streams (see Australia’s AUD 40 Million Solar Funding Opportunity).

For instance, USYD has secured $2.78 million to work with its industry partner Sundrive to commercialize Si perovskite tandem in Australia aiming for a silicon-perovskite tandem cell with an efficiency of at least 30% and a similar module with a minimum of 28% efficiency.

One of the winners of this funding round, UNSW with its project partners is working on reducing silver consumption of mass-produced silicon solar cells through a novel screen-printing metallization technique to bring down its use to 5 mg/W. It will reduce the use of silver by a factor of 3.0 for industrial PERC, 4.5 for TOPCon and 6.0 for SHJ solar cells.

There are some interesting research projects in the list under stream 2 winners. The team of ANU researchers and their project partners are working on developing a method to reduce the BOS costs of solar PV energy as applied to industrial heating at over 150°C, which is responsible for approximately 11.3% of Australian emissions.

A list of all the winning research projects can be viewed on ARENA’s website.

In June 2022, ARENA committed up to $45 million funding for the Australian Centre for Photovoltaics (ACAP) to help achieve the 30 30 30 goal. It counts as having supported ACAP’s work with $128.99 million in funding over 18 years up until 2030 (see ARENA’s $45 Million For $0.30/W Solar Cost).

About The Author

Anu Bhambhani

SENIOR NEWS EDITOR Anu is our solar news whirlwind. At TaiyangNews, she covers everything that is of importance in the world of solar power. In the past 9 years that she has been associated with TaiyangNews, she has covered over thousands of stories, and analysis pieces on markets, technology, financials, and more on a daily basis. She also hosts TaiyangNews Conferences and Webinars. Prior to joining TaiyangNews, Anu reported on sustainability, management, and education for leading print dailies in India. [email protected]

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