Global meetings coming to Sydney will spark energy sector innovation

Off the back of the visit from the Secretary General of the World Energy Council and Energy Dialogues at the national and state level recently, the New South Wales (NSW) Minister for Resources and Energy, the Hon. Don Harwin MP, today announced the State will host two major global meetings bringing the world’s energy future thinkers and decision makers to Sydney.

Focusing on society’s future energy generation, storage and conversion needs, the International Conference on Photovoltaic Science and Engineering (PVSEC) in 2021 and the International Meeting on Lithium Batteries (IMLB) the following year will attract 2,600 delegates between them, injecting an estimated A$8.1 million in direct expenditure into the NSW economy.

“Global meetings like these play a vital role in bringing together global expertise to discuss the latest breakthroughs from around the world including those from Australia, forge new international collaborations, and problem-solve for the future,” said Mr Harwin.

This news follows the announcement of the NSW Government’s $55 million Emerging Energy Program launched in August, aimed at commercialising large-scale projects that use dispatchable technology including solar, batteries and pumped hydro.

“NSW is leading Australia in future-proofing our energy system to ensure we have the transmission and capacity to support emerging opportunities in our transition to a more diverse energy future,” he added.

Strategic bidding services organisation BESydney secured PVSEC 2021 and IMLB 2022 for Sydney in partnership with the University of NSW (UNSW) and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), respectively.

“I congratulate BESydney, UNSW and CSIRO for their combined efforts in securing these important forums, helping NSW to consolidate its status as a world-leader in modern energy,” Mr Harwin said.

BESydney CEO, Lyn Lewis-Smith, said these wins provide NSW the opportunity to strengthen local research expertise, showcase Australian leadership and support the future advancement of a sector.

“We have a global reputation as great collaborators – Australia has a rich heritage of innovations. These events rapidly advance that process and ensure a broader range of our local industry has the opportunity to develop new capabilities and catalyse new or expanded work with its international counterparts.”

PVSEC 2021 is expected to attract 800 R&D professionals and experts from industry, academia and public institutions over five days with the aim of creating new energy systems for society. Participants present and discuss problems concerning solar power generation.

Associate Professor Bram Hoex, Deputy Head of School (Research) and Director, International Strategy at UNSW and PVSEC Bid Leader said he is excited to bring the Asian PVSEC back to Sydney again after a 30-year hiatus. “Australia, and in particular UNSW, has been world-leading in solar energy research as well as education for over four decades. We are thrilled that we can showcase our research as well as our unique research facilities, which includes Australia’s only research pilot line for industrial silicon solar cells, the Solar Industrial Research Facility (SIRF), to the international solar energy community.”

The following year, IMLB is the premier international conference on the state of lithium battery science and technology, as well as current and future applications in transportation (including electric and hybrid vehicles), commercial, aerospace, biomedical, and other promising sectors.

This will be the first time the conference has been held in Australia and is expected to attract 1,800 delegates over five days. Hosting IMLB 2022 aligns with the NSW Government Advanced Manufacturing priority, providing an opportunity to profile the burgeoning Australian lithium industry and strong research groups at the UNSW, University of Sydney, University of Technology Sydney and CSIRO.

“This prestigious event provides Australia with a platform to show off our battery community’s home-grown capabilities and demonstrate our importance in the global lithium value chain,” said Dr Adam Best, IMLB 2022 Conference Chair and Principal Research Scientist and battery specialist at CSIRO. “Australia is home to the world’s largest lithium battery and as a resource-based nation, produces 30 per cent of the world’s lithium. The local community are trailblazers when it comes to their development of electrolytes based on ionic liquids – a technology used for making the lithium batteries that power laptops, mobile phones and make electric vehicles safer and more efficient.”

The two meetings are scheduled to be hosted in International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney), Australia’s premier and first fully-integrated convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct.


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