February 22, 2022
UOW’s energy research capabilities showcased during Ministerial visit
Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction the Honourable Angus Taylor MP tours ISEM, IPRI and Hysata at AIIM
Federal Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction the Honourable Angus Taylor MP visited the University of Wollongong (UOW) Innovation Campus on Tuesday 22 February, meeting with senior executive and visiting some of the University’s leading energy-related research facilities.
Minister Taylor met with UOW Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) Professor Jennifer L Martin AC and UOW Energy Futures Network Director Mr Ty Christopher before speaking at the Illawarra First Executive Forum, where discussions focused on how the Illawarra is ideally placed to lead the way in Australia’s clean energy future.
Professor Martin welcomed the opportunity to showcase some of the key energy research strengths at UOW and acknowledged the Minister’s “focus on ensuring a strong, local and growing manufacturing sector and on creating jobs for the future.”
“Jobs of the future will require innovation and creativity – and these are two key attributes of the people of the Illawarra. You need only look around this incredible Innovation Campus, to realise the immense potential this region has to offer in Australia’s clean manufacturing and energy future. The Innovation Campus fosters connections between university, community, industry and business,” Professor Martin said.
Following the Forum, Minister Taylor toured the Australian Institute of Innovative Materials (AIIM) at Innovation Campus.
The visit showcased UOW’s holistic approach to energy research with a focus on delivering a sustainable energy future and highlighted the University’s green hydrogen energy capabilities.
Minister Taylor was interested in UOW’s unique approach to energy research and recent efforts expanding its engagement with industry, government and regulators in energy domains including electricity, gas and hydrogen.
The AIIM visit included a tour of two of AIIM’s flagship institutes The Institute for Superconducting and Electronic Materials (ISEM), The Intelligent Polymer Research Institute (IPRI) as well as Hysata a company spun out from UOW that is working to commercialise breakthrough Australian hydrogen electrolyser technology.
AIIM is a purpose-built facility helping transform multi-functional materials research into commercial reality. It was the first facility in Australia to bridge the gap between breakthroughs, prototyping and commercialisation. The multi-disciplinary focus of the Institute brings together biologists, clinicians, chemists, physicists, engineers and materials scientists.
Dr Germanas Peleckis, Interim Executive Director, AIIM led the tour and introduced Minister Taylor to researchers carrying out work in energy generation, transmission and storage, including battery technology for electric vehicles and processes that will increase the uptake of renewable energy.
AIIM has an international reputation for battery development and for battery management systems, including world-class battery and charger testing facilities.
ISEM is a world-leading research institute dedicated to developing new and innovative technologies to generate, transport and store energy and improve the efficiency of electronic devices.
ISEM researchers have developed numerous advanced materials and novel techniques for use in lithium batteries, supercapacitators, fuel cells, hydrogen storage, and in hybrid electric vehicles and portable technology devices.
IPRI is the lead node of the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (ACES) and the Australian National Fabrication Facility (ANFF). Its researchers are world leaders in the development of “intelligent” materials and nanotechnology.
IPRI researchers demonstrate Wearable Photo Electrochemical Cells harvesting solar energy to Hon Angus Taylor MP
Professor David Officer, Electromaterials Theme Leader and Professor of Organic Chemistry at IPRI, who also leads The Materials Node for ANFF, introduced the minister to researchers working on a new form of graphene that has potential as a valuable carbon additive for a variety of electrochemical devices, Wearable Photo Electrochemical Cells harvesting solar energy, and an emerging carbon capture system.
Minister Taylor was also interested in UOW’s leading research into the use of new electrolyser techniques to produce clean hydrogen more efficiently and to capture and recycle carbon dioxide.
Professor Officer introduced the minister to UOW spin out company Hysata, which is working to commercialise breakthrough Australian hydrogen electrolyser technology.
During the tour of AIIM, Professor Officer introduced Hon Angus Taylor MP to UOW spin out company Hysata
The technology was developed by a team led by chemical catalysis and characterisation expert Professor Gerry Swiegers.
Green hydrogen is widely acknowledged to be a crucial part of reaching net zero emissions globally, with the potential to meet up to 20 per cent of energy demand in a net zero global economy.
In July 2021, Hysata was launched with $5 million in seed funding led by IP Group, with support from the Australian Government’s Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), CEFC’s first hydrogen-related investment.
UOW Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) Professor Jennifer L Martin AC said the tour and visit by Minister Taylor was a wonderful opportunity to “showcase the Illawarra’s unique capabilities that will expand energy transformation locally and nationally.”
Main Picture: UOW Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) Professor Jennifer L Martin AC, Federal Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction the Honourable Angus Taylor and UOW Energy Futures Network Director Mr Ty Christopher.