Australia’s rapid uptake of solar panels is set to continue with the Government backing the development of a new lightweight and flexible solar energy technology.

The Government is supporting technology company Sunman to further develop and deploy its eArc solar photovoltaic (PV) panels – a flexible composite solar panel that is 70 per cent lighter than a glass module and 14-17 kilograms lighter than conventional panels.

This new technology has a wider range of applications than traditional glass panels, allowing more Australian businesses and households to install solar panels.

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said Australia is a world-leader in renewable energy and this funding will help make it easier for more Australians to install solar.

“Australian households and businesses are increasingly choosing rooftop solar to power their homes,” Minister Taylor said.

“Already, one in four Australian homes have solar that is helping to reduce their energy bills.

“Being lightweight and able to be moulded to a variety of architecturally desirable shapes will allow these innovative panels to be installed in locations where heavy glass solar panels cannot, meaning more households and businesses can utilise solar power.”

The Government is investing $9.6 million in the project, administered by the Clean Energy Finance Corporation.

The rate of rooftop solar uptake in Australia continues to exceed expectations. In the Clean Energy Regulator’s latest Quarterly Carbon Market Report, it was estimated that 2.9 GW of small-scale solar PV capacity will be installed in 2020.