The Federal Government has backed two major research initiatives to advance Australia’s world-leading energy storage expertise.
Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham and Minister for the Environment and Energy Josh Frydenberg this week announced $7.5 million for two new specialist research hubs that will focus on advances and innovations within the energy storage sector.
Mr Birmingham said $4.4 million had been committed to a specialist training centre at Deakin University to train and skill the next generation of researchers within the energy industry.
“The energy sector is going through rapid transformational change and we need the best and brightest researchers at the forefront of this change developing new ideas and new technologies,” he said.
“We need researchers who will expand Australia’s capability in energy production and in the critical area of energy storage.
“These researchers will be vital in working with industry to explore and develop new types of energy storage beyond batteries, for example hydrogen storage technology.”
Mr Frydenberg said $3.1 million would also be provided for a new Australian Research Council (ARC) Research Hub at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) to be at the forefront of developing new energy storage technologies.
“We know the huge importance of energy storage, especially into the future as our energy sector continues to transition,” Minister Frydenberg said.
“Our National Energy Guarantee (NEG) is focused on tackling power prices, reducing emissions and delivering reliability to Australia’s electricity network and combined with the types of research advances we’re investing in we’re ensuring the country is well-placed for the future.
“With the change in electricity generation, there is also the need for advancements in energy storage and its continued integration, and this hub will at the heart of this.
“I expect researchers to work with the energy sector to progress innovations in energy storage technologies such as printed batteries, structural supercapacitors, fuel cells and power-to-gas systems.
“Working closely with industry this Hub will at the forefront of developing more cost effective energy storage solutions that also allow for better integration into the future energy grid.”
The ARC Research Hub for Integrated Energy Storage Solutions and ARC Training Centre for Future Energy Storage Technologies are part of the Turnbull Government’s ARC Industrial Transformation Research Program.
This is part of $180 million in new ARC funding announced this week to support 132 new research investments, led by Australian universities.