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Oceania

UQ: A quantum dot solar cell with 16.6% efficiency

Scientists at Australia’s University of Queensland have set a new world record for a quantum dot solar cell. The group fabricated a 0.1cm² device from perovskite and measured power conversion efficiency at 16.6%. The record has been verified by the United States National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Rio Tinto to power Pilbara iron ore mine with solar PV

Mining giant Rio Tinto has approved the construction of a large-scale solar PV and battery energy storage system for its Koodaideri mine in Western Australia. When completed, the solar plant will be in the running for Australia’s largest PV installation at a mining site.

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Pioneering solar-powered aircraft completes Australian test flight

The PHASA-35 crewless solar and battery-powered aircraft completed its first test flight this week. The pioneering solar-powered aircraft could fill a niche as a cheap alternative to satellites.

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Microgrid management technology hard at work in Onslow

PXiSE says its microgrid controller technology is successfully managing the output of a solar farm and a grid-scale battery in coordination with a gas power station in the coastal town of Onslow. It now readies for the next stages of deployment of its software solution across Horizon Power’s network.

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Maoneng, Chint up the ante, aim to develop 2 GW of large-scale solar in Australia

Australian renewables developer Maoneng and Chinese module maker and EPC contractor Chint have mandated $200 million for an initial project as part of a series of utility-scale solar farms they aim to develop in Australia under a joint venture partnership.

Daintree solar to hydrogen microgrid closing on reality

An Australian-first solar to hydrogen-based microgrid for the World Heritage Protected Daintree Rainforest is another step closer to reality this week after Federal Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch revealed the feasibility study funded by the Federal Government last year is “on track”.

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Victoria decides to go it alone on transmission to unlock more large-scale renewables and batteries

The Victorian government has decided to break away from national electricity rules and introduce legislation that will fast-track priority projects like grid-scale batteries and transmission upgrades and make room for more large-scale solar and wind on the grid. The announced reforms have prompted a flurry of reactions.

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Sydney’s Inner West targets 1000% increase in solar generation

Sydney’s Inner West Council has set an ambitious target of 1000% increase in solar generation over the next decade. Council is seeking Expressions of Interest from all parties as the Inner West looks to help its residents toward a sustainable future.

UNSW students and solar PV in remote Vanuatuan communities

UNSW student groups have been visiting Tanna Island in Vanuatu for over a decade. The solar PV solutions they’ve brought with them have helped many communities, but since Cyclone Pam tore through the region in 2015, sustainable solar is more important more than ever.

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SEC rallies industry to prevent a sunset on opportunities in Australia’s renewable energy market

Over the past week renewable energy developers and major investors have told the Smart Energy Council that, “They’re done. The sovereign risk in Australia is too great,” says the industry body’s Government Relations Manager, Wayne Smith. With prospects, employment and energy prices in jeopardy, the SEC vows to rattle the corridors of power for a bankable plan.

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