Research hub to make Australia a world leader in battery technology

University of Wollongong researchers will play a key role in the new Australian Research Council (ARC) Research Hub in New Safe and Reliable Energy Storage and Conversion Technologies.

The Hub will deliver new energy storage technologies to eliminate the serious fire risk in current technologies.

It is one of five new Australian Research Council (ARC) Industrial Transformation Research Hubs, announced by Federal Minister for Education Dan Tehan on Thursday (2 July), to undertake research with applications in the real world.

The Research Hub brings together Australian and international research organisations with a broad range of industry partners to develop innovative solutions to challenges facing current energy storage and conversion technologies. Professor Ying Chen from Deakin University will lead the Hub, which the ARC has awarded funding of $5 million over five years.

UOW researchers Distinguished Professor Zaiping Guo, Distinguished Professor Hua Liu, Emeritus Professor Christopher Cook and Dr Jonathan Knott will serve as chief investigators.

Professor Guo said the Research Hub would addresses safety and reliability issues, and the environmental impact of current energy storage and conversion technologies.

“The research will deliver a new generation of technologies for storage, from small-scale portable devices to large-scale industrial applications, using recycled and natural materials, and eliminating the serious fire risk in current technologies,” she said.

The Hub will strategically position Australia as a leader in the emerging energy storage and conversion space, ensuring Australian industry can maintain a competitive advantage and leverage a unique mineral wealth and world-leading technology development position in this critically important sector.

The development of all solid-state batteries and aqueous-based rechargeable batteries will make Australia the world’s battery leader in terms of renewable energy storage.

The Hub will deliver high-energy density and high safety energy storage for electrical vehicles, enable efficient utilisation of renewable energies, address global environmental concerns, and accelerate the development and commercialisation of renewable energy technologies in Australia.

This will make a significant contribution to addressing environmental concerns and to improving Australia’s energy security, as well as to its economic growth.

One of the stated aims of the new hub is the creation of start-up companies and commercialisation opportunities for existing partners, benefiting both the Australian economy and potentially transforming the energy industry landscape.

Other universities contributing to the Hub are the University of Sydney, University of Adelaide, University of Queensland, and University of Southern Queensland. Industry Partners are Hazer Group, Creswick Quartz, TDA Golden Field, Bolt Technologies, DLG Battery, HBIS Group, Zhuoyue Power New Energy, Oxford Crown Developments, Sicona Battery Technologies and Sustainable Energy Equities.