Solar energy research scores funding hat trick

15 January 2013

Three research groups at Uppsala University have been granted a total of SEK 80 million by the Swedish Energy Agency, out of a total of SEK 108 million. It is the largest Swedish investment ever in solar energy research.

Today the Swedish Energy Agency presented the distribution of SEK 108 million in total to ‘some of Sweden’s best research groups’. Out of these 108 million, 80 million go to Uppsala University; 34 million for artificial photosynthesis for solar fuels, 29 million for research on dye-sensitised solar cells and 17 million for research on thin film solar cells (TFSC). It is the largest one-time investment in solar energy ever in Sweden.

‘This is of course very good news and clearly shows that Uppsala is the centre for solar energy research in Sweden. Here we have everything from synthetic and physical chemistry, biochemistry and synthetic biology to physics and applied electronics’, says professor Stenbjörn Styring, who leads the research on artificial photosynthesis.

Five of the research projects that have been granted financial support from the Swedish Energy Agency are developing new types of solar cells, while the sixth and largest, the consortium for artificial photosynthesis, is aimed at transforming solar energy into fuel. Each of the research projects are deemed capable of increasing the proportion of renewable energy in the Swedish energy system. Working solar cells are available today, but new and expanded areas of application open up if they can become cheaper, more flexible or more efficient. Machines that transform solar energy into fuel do not exist on the market yet, but through this grant the research can move closer to this goal.

‘With its unique climate for innovation, Sweden has the potential of leading the next step in the development of solar energy’, says Erik Brandsma, Director General of the Swedish Energy Agency, in a press release.

The first announcement within the research programme ‘Electricity and fuel from the sun’ received many applications. The Swedish Energy Agency called for projects where research findings were being applied through world class research.

The three Uppsala research groups are led by Stenbjörn Styring, Anders Hagfeldt and Marika Edoff and involve roughly a hundred researchers and research students in Uppsala, as well as researchers at the Royal Institute of Technology, Lund University and at Swerea IVF in Mölndal.

Last modified: 2021-02-14