Not displaying correctly? View in browser.
Australian Government | Australian Renewable Energy Agency | ARENA
28 April 2022

Learnings from the lab

Welcome to ARENA Insights - a newsletter dedicated to sharing knowledge and insights directly with industry.


Forward Insights to a friend

Record-breaking research sets perovskite PV efficiency benchmark

An ANU project has broken the solar cell efficiency record for perovskite solar cells with a new benchmark at 22.6%. This project has significantly improved commercialisation prospects for perovskite cell technology.


ARENA has granted over $105 million to 70 projects across five Solar R&D Competitive Rounds. Our R&D programs have sought to increase the ambition and capacity of R&D projects by providing long term funding and a clear objective to increase cell efficiencies while decreasing costs.


Image: Professor Kylie Catchpole and Dr The Duong undertaking perovskite research at ANU


Read ANU’s final project report on stable electrodes  


Proton reactor gets hydrogen moving

The RMIT has recently completed a project investigating a new way to store and transport hydrogen. It involves using a proton flow reactor to chemically embed hydrogen in a carrier material such as a carbon-based powder. This novel approach offers great potential for Australia to export green hydrogen to foreign markets without energy intensive liquefaction and specialised shipping systems.


Image: The RMIT team from left to right; Professor Sherman Cheung, Dr Biddyut Paul, Professor John Andrews, Professor Bahman Shabani, Mr Tony Baird, Mr Francois Du Toit, Dr Seyed Niya, Dr Shahin Heidari. 
Team members not present: Dr Shweta Kaushal, Mr Monjur Mourshed, Professor Michelle Spencer, Dr Ruchika Ojha, Professor Gary Rosengarten, Mr Alireza Heidarian and Dr Sue Maniam.

Read RMIT’s final project report 


Green hydrogen researchers win gold

Australian hydrogen researchers continue to break new ground with world record achievements. A team from the ANU working on a novel low-cost photocatalytic cell achieved a solar to hydrogen efficiency rate of 20%, which is a major advance on the previous best efficiency of 18%. Bolstered by this achievement, the team now has a theoretical limit of around 25% efficiency in sight raising the potential for green hydrogen production at a levelised cost of $3 per kg.


Image: Schematic illustration of the direct solar water splitting system consisting of perovskite-Si tandem cell integrated with NiFe/NF||NiMo/NF electrodes. Source: Advanced Energy Materials, 2022


Read about the ANU’s ground-breaking research  


Commercialising research: from laboratory to factory

Australian start-up SunDrive is commercialising its research to improve silicon solar cell efficiency and build a prototype manufacturing line. SunDrive claimed another solar efficiency record of 26.07% in March this year, and has plans to establish large-scale manufacturing in Australia. This is a global breakthrough for the industry and a great example of commercialising clever research to accelerate the energy transition.


Image: SunDrive founders David Hu and Vince Allen with their home grown solar cells

Read about SunDrive’s experience 


New to the Knowledge Bank

Flexible Demand 


ARENA commissioned NERA Economic Consulting and Energy Synapse to model the potential value of flexible demand in the electricity transition.

Distributed Energy Resources


A team from the University of Tasmania and the Australian National University has been investigating how to maximise the grid-stabilising benefits of distributed energy resources.

Pumped Hydro Energy Storage


Genex is building the Kidston Clean Energy Hub in North Queensland which consists of a 50MW solar farm and a 250MW pumped storage hydro project. The feasibility of an additional 150MW wind farm is currently being assessed.

Solar PV R&D


The UNSW have been investigating options for addressing key technical barriers to the efficient integration of renewable energy technologies.

Large Scale Solar


The Generator Operations Series provides analysis of projects funded under ARENA's Large-scale Solar PV Competitive Round.


Visit ARENA's Knowledge Bank for more.

Australian Government | Australian Renewable Energy Agency | ARENA
facebook twitter YouTube Linkedin

ARENA Insights shares knowledge from our open-source library of reports, studies and tools to provide guidance and learnings to benefit future renewable energy projects.

Unsubscribe here  

ARENA © 2022 | Privacy