Spanish industrial group Elecnor announced this week that it has been awarded a AUD 173 million (EUR 117.4 million) turnkey (EPC) contract for the second phase of the Bungala Solar PV project. The contract for the 137 MWp Bungala Two facility follows the award to Elecnor last April of the contract for the Bungala One plant. This latest contract win establishes Elecnor as the leading player in the Australian solar PV market.
The promise of ‘zero-energy’ buildings – which generate as much power as they consume – has been held back by two hurdles: the cost of the thin-film solar cells (used in façades, roofs and windows), and the fact they’re made from scarce, and highly toxic, materials.
That’s about to change: a team from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Australia, led by Dr Xiaojing Hao of the Australian Centre for Advanced Photovoltaics at the UNSW School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering, have achieved the world’s highest efficiency rating for a full-sized thin-film solar cell using a competing thin-film technology, known as CZTS.
The aviation industry is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions. In 2011 aviation contributed around 3% of Australia’s emissions. Despite improvements in efficiency, global aviation emissions are expected to grow 70% by 2020 from 2005. While the industry is seeking new renewable fuel sources, growing biofuels takes up valuable land and water that could be otherwise used to grow food.