$45 million to power the next generation of solar research

The Albanese Government has today announced $45 million in ARENA funding for the Australian Centre for Advanced Photovoltaics (ACAP) to help develop better and cheaper solar technologies that will help cut energy costs and reduce emissions.

ACAP at the University of New South Wales are world leaders in solar PV technology and innovation. This funding will extend the operations of ACAP’s solar photovoltaic (PV) research to 2030 as it develops the next generation of efficient solar technologies.

This latest round of funding will mean ACAP can facilitate:

  • A minimum graduation of 30 honours students, 10 masters students and 25 PhD students every year
  • Employ an average 18 postdoctoral research fellows each year across the eight research institutes
  • Provide a comprehensive domestic and international knowledge sharing program.
  • We need to kick our renewable energy transformation into gear, and the research done by ACAP will help Australia do that, allowing access to cleaner, cheaper power for Australia and the rest of the world.

Minister for Climate Change and Energy Chris Bowen said Australia’s solar PV innovation footprint was already the envy of the world.

“Australia has all the ingredients to become a renewable energy superpower with this Government working collaboratively to ensure secure, affordable and reliable energy that drives down emissions,” he said.

“Initial funding of ACAP and the great work they do was one of ARENA’s first big investments, and the Albanese Government is proud to lock further funding in for this decade to ensure they remain a world leader in solar research and innovation.”

ARENA is a proud Labor legacy, established by the previous Labor Government in 2012 and protected against multiple attempts to abolish and undermine it over the last decade, ACAP is a prime example of the benefits of ARENA to our nation.

“Today, 90 per cent of the world’s solar panels are made using technology developed by a UNSW team led by Professor Martin Green,” Minister Bowen said.

A consortium of six research groups led by the University of New South Wales and including the CSIRO, Australian National University, University of Melbourne, University of Queensland, University of Sydney and Monash University will undertake the research.

The funding extension builds on more than $83 million in ARENA funding allocated to ACAP for solar PV research and will be subject to the execution of a satisfactory funding agreement with the government.

Powering Australia is the Albanese Government's plan to cut power bills, reduce emissions and create jobs by boosting renewable energy – and this funding helps to deliver that.