Our A$12 million Solar Facility located here at Swinburne contains world-class infrastructure for research and development using nanophotonics, nanomaterials and nanoplasmonics.
The solar facility provides a platform for the commercialisation of NanoPlas, a revolutionary nanoplasmonic solar cell technology being developed at Swinburne. The team's strong mix of research and business expertise puts it in a unique position to research, develop and commercialise the innovative solar cell technology.
An ellipsometer in use at Swinburne's solar facility.
In 2013, the Solar Facility received a $4 million grant under the Science and Industry Endowment Fund for a project to push the efficiency of nanoplasmic solar cell technology. Four external partners provided in-kind support for the project: Stanford University, Suntech R&D Australia, Taifeng Group Co. Ltd and Anwell Precision Ltd. Researchers from Swinburne and the CSIRO are using the funding to take NanoPlas from the lab to a small-scale pilot project.
NanoPlas technology addresses the biggest challenge of thin film solar cells: the cost-effectiveness, making building-integrable solar cells a more viable technology for the building sector. Integrating solar cells with buildings is an attractive concept for the building industry because it potentially allows skyscrapers to self-power themselves with purely green solar energy.
The technology also has the potential to make solar energy more competitive in the household electricity supply market.