ARC research hub to pave the way towards zero-emission power generation technologies

August 10, 2023

QUT has received $5 million from the Australian Research Council to fund the ARC Research Hub in Zero-emission Power Generation for Carbon Neutrality.

Image from left: Professor Jennifer MacLeod, Associate Professor Ting Liao, Professor Prashant Sonar, Professor Zhi-Gang Chen, Professor Hongxia Wang, Professor Jose Alarco, inset: Dr Xiaolei Shi

Its aim is to develop sustainable zero-emission power generation technologies to convert gaseous waste into valuable products and create scalable pathways to market for driving industry transformation.

The research hub has significant support from industry, with a further $8.55 million cash and in-kind contributions from national and international industry partners.

Hub director Professor Zhi-Gang Chen, from the QUT School of Chemistry and Physics and Centre for Materials Science, said the aim of  the 19 researchers from six Australian universities was to develop a new energy, storage and carbon conversion system which would contribute to Australia’s goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.

“We will develop zero-emission power generation technologies for harvesting sustainable electricity from waste industrial heat and environment, and store electricity in ‘green’ batteries to enable conversion of atmospheric emissions into usable products,” Professor Chen said.

“Our next step is to develop batteries to store this energy that will be high-performance, low-cost, high-safety, high-energy density and have a long-life cycle.

“This will provide the energy to transform gaseous waste pollutants, including CO2 (carbon dioxide), from the atmosphere and convert the CO2 into the building blocks of important chemicals for sustainable developments that benefit society.”

Professor Zhi-Gang Chen said the hub would deliver a new type of renewable energy and high-value materials that would be transformative for industry, the economy, and society.

He said the project’s aim was to stimulate the emerging industry of sustainable energy to help meet Australia’s carbon neutrality targets.

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