Overcoming the barriers to affordable solar energy

We have brought together a strong consortium to develop a complete solar energy solution for millions of domestic and commercial buildings around the world - Professor Andrew Blakers, Chief Lead Investigator, Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems, ANU.

ANU Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems researchers are working with leading Australia-US solar solution company Chromasun to develop the next generation of solar energy innovation. They are joined in the partnership by CSIRO, the University of New South Wales and NEP Solar. The Australian Solar Institute granted $3.3 million to support the work. Together, the consortium is helping find solutions for some of the problems that have prevented the widespread rollout of hybrid solar-thermal systems, which harness the sun’s energy to create electricity, and, heat and power air conditioning.

The new Micro-Concentrator unit developed by the group solves the market acceptance issues with its highly efficient, low-profile, light, easy to install and aesthetically pleasing design. The amount of useful energy that can be obtained from a limited roof area with this technology is superior to traditional photovoltaic or thermal systems and will significantly reduce the impact on a building’s aesthetics.