UNSW has ensured its role as a key contributor to creating a sustainable and secure energy future following a $75 million funding announcement from the Federal Government.

The funds will enable construction of a new Energy Technologies Building, which will be a flagship research facility at UNSW and the focal point for the recently created Centre for Energy Research and Policy Analysis (CERPA).

The new building will support the university's internationally recognised research and teaching in key energy areas including photovoltaics, carbon capture and storage, oil and gas reservoir characterisation, nanomaterials and policy and market analysis.

It will create a suite of infrastructure to support research, teaching and industry collaboration in areas which are of critical importance to Australia's energy security and international climate treaty obligations. The building will also provide a formal learning space for 300 engineering students.

The $75 million in funding was announced today by Minister for Education Julia Gillard and Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Kim Carr as part of a $580 million package for investment in Australian universities through the Education Investment Fund.

The Energy Technologies Building, which will cost approximately $160 million, will be a showcase of carbon-neutral design, and construction is expected to be completed by late 2011 or early 2012.

Minister Gillard also announced today that UNSW would receive $22.2 million through the new Teaching and Learning Capital Fund for Higher Education. The funding is part of a $500 million package from the Federal Government for the development of learning and teaching infrastructure in Australian universities. The money can be used for the creation of new facilities and the maintenance of existing learning and teaching spaces.

Media Contact: Peter Trute | 02 9385 1933 | p.trute@unsw.edu.au