Victoria focuses on green energy

Friday, 02 July, 2021

Victoria focuses on green energy

The creation of a new battery facility and regional hydrogen hub in Victoria is intended to cement the state’s leadership in green energy, courtesy of $35 million in funding.

Minister for Higher Education Gayle Tierney and Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio launched the projects at Deakin University.

They include the Battery Technology Research and Innovation Hub 2.0 (BatTRI-Hub 2.0) at Deakin’s Burwood campus. It features a testing lab and pilot production line to research and manufacture advanced batteries using lithium and sodium.

The products will be developed to meet bespoke requirements in defence, agriculture, disaster zones and health settings. The Hub will enhance the work of BatTRI-Hub 1.0, which has already created valuable products for industry — including Toyota in Japan.

Government funding will also help establish the nation’s first regional hydrogen hub in Warrnambool, called Hycel Technology Hub. It will develop and manufacture hydrogen fuel technology, with a focus on transport and heavy vehicles, storage and industry applications.

As part of the project, Deakin aims to transition its Warrnambool campus from gas to hydrogen and will convert the Warrnambool Bus Lines fleet to clean energy.

The facilities will accommodate 290 jobs in research, manufacturing and the energy sector and foster learning and research opportunities for school groups, university students, community and industry. Construction is expected to begin next year and will create about 78 local jobs.

The Victorian Government has invested $14.2 million in this project — one of many proposals from universities to the Victorian Higher Education State Investment Fund, which was developed in response to the significant impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the sector.

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