Research, technology and innovation

A premier research hub

The CSIRO, Australia's foremost science and research institution, has established its Energy Transformed Centre in Newcastle, north of Sydney. Dedicated to energy research, the centre showcases ecological design alongside world-class science facilities, delivering innovations in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

The centre plays a pivotal role in Australia's energy research landscape as a centre for excellence in energy modelling, large-scale solar and carbon capture technologies, renewable energy integration and energy efficiency.

In addition, the NSW Government has invested in pioneering Australia's first solar thermal cooling technology in a high-demand retail environment. Led by GPT Group and supported by the CSIRO, Bovis Lend Lease and New Energy Partners designed and installed a solar thermal cooling plant to air-condition the Charleston Square shopping centre near Newcastle.

Innovating for a renewable future

NSW is developing and commercialising ground-breaking technologies for a world increasingly conscious of its environmental footprint.

The state is at the forefront of solar power research and development (R&D). For example, under the Education Investment Fund component of the Solar Flagships Project, the University of New South Wales has been granted A$19 million to conduct solar energy research.

Several pre-commercial advanced biofuels facilities are also operating in NSW. At Somersby, on the Central Coast, a demonstration plant operated by Licella converts woody materials and other biomass into liquid bio-crude oil that has the potential to be refined for use as petrol.

NSW has excellent hydropower R&D capacity at facilities such as the Water Research Laboratory at the University of New South Wales. There is strong potential to export the state's knowledge to assist in the development of substantial hydropower resources in nearby nations in South-East Asia.

NSW researchers are also examining ways to streamline processes and remove barriers to enable wood waste from appropriate sources to be used to fuel existing power stations. The state is also researching invasive native scrub as a source of bioenergy.