The Australian Government has announced almost $1.3 million of funding for Australia’s next generation of solar researchers.


 Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson joined some of the grant recipients at the Australian Solar Institute's (ASI) ‘Three Minute Solar Thesis Challenge’ held at the Australian National University.


Speaking at the Challenge, Minister Ferguson congratulated the researchers on successfully receiving the PhD Scholarships and Postdoctoral Fellowships.


“The Skills Development Program supports the work of our upcoming solar researchers who will ultimately work with industry to help make solar more efficient and cost effective,” Mr Ferguson said.


The Skills Development Program is supporting projects ranging from techniques to improve the efficiency of solar cells made from low-cost and readily available organic materials, to investigating ways to optimise hybrid solar-diesel systems in remote areas using smart grids.


The ‘Three Minute Solar Thesis Challenge’ gave ASI PhD Scholars and Postdoctoral Fellows three minutes and three slides to convince an eminent panel of researchers of their project’s merits. The Challenge provided participants with the opportunity to sharpen their communication skills and meet with colleagues from other universities.


The new funding recipients will join an existing group of 24 early career researchers working to advance photovoltaic and concentrating solar power technologies through the ASI’s Skills Development Program.