- Start date
07 February 2022
- Closing date
11 April 2022
How to Apply for Funding
- 1 Step 1 - Read the program guidelines
- 2 Step 2 - Observe the key dates
- 3 Step 3 - Prepare your response
The Australian Government’s Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan and Low Emissions Technology Statement 2021 (LETS) identifies that reducing the cost of solar PV generation will be critical to unlocking the economic, employment and emissions abatement potential of other priority low emissions technologies. The LETS has identified a stretch goal of $15 per MWh for the Levelised Cost of Energy (LCOE) for utility scale solar PV.
How it works
We are seeking proposals for Research & Development (R&D) projects to accelerate cost reductions and help meet the Australian Government’s solar stretch goal. The Ultra Low Cost Solar PV (ULCS) Round is open to a broad range of applicants, including research groups and commercial organisations. We seek ambitious proposals that can make a significant contribution to these cost reduction objectives.
This is a competitive funding round under our Transformative Research Accelerating Commercialisation (TRAC) Program. It is open to applications for projects which have achieved a Technology Readiness Level of at least three at the time of applying.
The round has 2 streams. Applicants must select one as their focus:
1. Cells and modules: Improvement in the efficiency of cells and modules is a key lever for reducing LCOE. Cells and modules also need to be cost competitive, offer longevity and consider sustainability issues when manufactured and deployed at scale.
2. Balance of System costs and Operations and Maintenance: Significant reduction of Balance of System (BoS) costs and Operations and Maintenance (O&M) costs are also required to achieve ULCS. Innovative plant design configurations and the use of advanced automation in assembly and construction are potential pathways to lower utility scale solar PV construction costs. In the O&M phase, automated maintenance technology and intelligent plant monitoring systems are potential cost reduction pathways.
Applicants will be notified in writing in May 2022 as to whether they have been successful or unsuccessful in the EOI stage. Only successful applicants will be invited to submit a full application.
- Expressions of Interest open 7 February 2022 until 11 April 2022, 5:00pm AEST
- Full Applications open to invited applicants from May 2022 for 8 weeks
- We expect to notify successful applicants in August 2022.
How to apply
3.1: Navigate to and create an account with the ARENANet portal
3.2: Select Ultra Low Cost Solar Research and Development from the program options when commencing your expression of interest application
3.3: Submit the following documents with your expression of interest application:
- ULCS Funding Announcement (PDF 289KB)
- TRAC Program Guidelines (PDF 382KB)
- Funding Agreement Template including Knowledge Sharing Plan (DOCX 209KB)
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