Technology and R&D

RMIT researchers demonstrate first working proton battery

Scientists at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) have demonstrated the first working example of a ‘proton battery’, which utilizes a carbon electrode and reversible hydrogen fuel cell for the storage of energy. The scientists say that their small prototype has already demonstrated similar storage capacities to commercially available lithium-ion batteries, with plenty of potential for further optimization.

German researchers create ‘sunlight funnel’ to concentrate light onto solar cells

Scientists led by the University of Braunschweig have developed a new type of solar concentrator, which can concentrate light from any direction onto a small area, such as a solar panel. The researchers say that funnels can be tuned to different light wavelengths and stacked, allowing for conversion of the entire light spectrum into electricity.

Smart swimming pool pilot wins $2.5 million ARENA grant

A New South Wales energy management company has won ARENA’s funding for a smart swimming poll pilot project, which holds a promise to both manage peak demand and save pool owners up to 30% of their household electricity use.

US researchers get the lead out of perovskites

Scientists led by Brown University have developed perovskite solar cells, which replace the toxic lead common to many of these material structures with titanium. The researchers say that with further optimization, the material could eventually be ideal for use as a tandem cell layer.

Cancer claims UNSW solar pioneer Stuart Wenham

The modern PV industry has lost one its pioneering researchers. The University of New South Wales’ Stuart Wenham died on Saturday December 23, after having being diagnosed with a malignant melanoma in September. He was 61 years old.

Singaporean solar researchers reach 21.5% efficiency on MonoPoly cell technology, presents rival to PERC

The Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS) announced a new efficiency milestone, achieving 21.5% average cell efficiency for its fully screen printed bifacial silicon technology. According to SERIS, the milestone was achieved at pilot-scale production using commercially available wafers

ARENA awards $29.2 million to 20 solar R&D projects

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has announced that it will award multiple Australian universities and research institutes with a total of $29.2 million to support early-stage research into new solar innovations.

CRC-P awards $8.34 million for three green projects

Under the Cooperative Research Center Program 4th Selection Round, the Australian Federal Government will extend a grant for a smart home energy management system. Other awarded green projects involve an energy storage technology alternative for lithium-ion batteries and innovative generation of low cost, zero-emission, reliable electricity.

ARENA grants $6 million to Greatcell to advance perovskites

A funding agreement has been signed between Australian solar cell producer Greatcell and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, which pledged to allocate $6 million to underpin commercial development of perovskite solar cells.

DNV GL: AI will make renewables more efficient

A paper published by consultancy DNV GL forecasts major growth in the use of artificial intelligence (AI) applications within renewable energy, and outlines the risks and opportunities of such technologies.