The Rudd Government will provide $2.2 million to advance a revolutionary technology developed at the University of Wollongong to produce low-cost hydrogen through its Clean Technology Innovation Program, Member for Cunningham Sharon Bird announced today.
Ms Bird joined the research team led by Professor Gordon Wallace, Director of the University of Wollongong’s Intelligent Polymer Research Institute and lead node of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science, to gain a greater understanding of the breakthrough technology.
“This is game changing technology.
“To think that in the not too distant future it might only take a few litres of sea water a day to power your home starts to change the way that we think about energy generation.
“Federal Labor is looking to new ways to grow jobs and the economy beyond the China mining boom and technologies like this one are part of that economic transformation and clean energy future”, Ms Bird said.
Aquahydrex, the company receiving the grant, is a spin-off company of the federally funded Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science. The technology developed allows sea water to be split into water and hydrogen to produce a clean and sustainable fuel source.
The funding from the Clean Technology Innovation Program will be used to scale-up and develop prototypes for development and testing on a larger scale. Private sector investment in the project has also been secured.
Federal Member for Throsby, Stephen Jones, said, “This technology was developed by a research group funded by a Federal Labor government, in a facility that was built with an investment by a Federal Labor government and the technology will be advanced with a further investment by a Federal Labor government.
“Partnerships between researchers, government and the private sector, like this one, are one of the ways that we are building the economy of the future.
“The Rudd Government is getting results for the Illawarra – investing to help transform our economy and help create new industries and jobs.”
The Rudd Government has invested nearly $135 million in new research and training facilities at the University of Wollongong including a $35 million contribution to the SMART Infrastructure Facility, $43.8 million for the Australian Institute for Innovative Materials Processing and Devices facility, $25.1 million for the Sustainable Buildings Research Centre and $31 million for the Early Start facility.
This funding builds on other announcements that help to transform the Illawarra’s economy including $50 million to build the Maldon-Dombarton rail link.
Funding for this commitment has been provided for in the Budget.