Australia & China Sign Innovative Solar Deal

Canberra, ACT, Australia ( April 28, 2011

Australia & China Sign Innovative Solar Deal

Australia & China Sign Innovative Solar Deal

A $10.7 million collaborative project to increase the efficiency of photovoltaic solar cells was launched in Canberra today between researchers at the Australian National University (ANU) and one of the world’s largest manufacturers of solar cells, Trina Solar.

Launching the project at ANU, Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson AM MP said it would help keep Australia at the forefront of global solar R&D innovation as world-class researchers at the ANU will work with Trina Solar to develop low cost, high efficiency solar cells.

“This project will play a critical role in driving down the cost of solar cells, making solar electricity more affordable,” Minister Ferguson said.

“The Government is supporting this work with a $3.3 million project grant from the $150 million Australian Solar Institute – part of our $5 billion Clean Energy Initiative.

“The collaboration is a great win for the ANU and Australia, reinforcing our leadership role in global solar research and development.

“It is expected the project will attract millions of dollars in licensing fees for the ANU in addition to supporting high value research jobs in Australia.

“The ability of the team at the ANU to secure investment from Trina, a leading company in the global energy supply chain, is a strong indication of the strength of solar research and development in Australia.

“It positions us well to capture future investment from this high growth, fast moving global market and gives us a glimpse of the future industries the large-scale development and deployment of clean energy technologies could create.

“Through increasing cell efficiency, this project aims to drive down the cost of photovoltaic modules to the point where solar electricity is competitive with other forms of stationary energy.

“This would be a truly exciting milestone to reach in our efforts to reduce emissions and supply more of our energy demands from renewable sources.”

Minister Ferguson said the ANU will also work with the University of NSW as part of this project to develop very high performance solar cells through more precise structuring of solar cell surfaces.

In aggregate to date the Australian Solar Institute has committed over $66 million to fund 27 solar R&D projects, with a total leveraged value of $209 million. (

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