Senator Kate Lundy launching the Australian Clean Tech competition in March.

3 September 2013 — The finalists for the Australian Cleantech Competition have been announced. The competition looks for the best high-tech, high-skill companies in the Australian cleantech sector, and provides assessment, mentoring and promotion opportunities.

Companies can be delivering technologies, services and policies that address pollution, waste treatment and energy storage, energy efficiency, building materials, transportation systems and public utilities.

Many of the eight companies in this year’s finals have created sustainability technology applicable to the building and construction industry, particularly regarding energy efficiency technology and solar applications.

The overall winner will remotely represent Australia in the global finals of the Cleantech Open Global Ideas Competition.

As well as the top prize, there will also be category winners for the best clean technology for specific industries, including a Manufacturing Cleantech Award and a Built Environment Cleantech Award.

“Finalists will be provided with mentoring from some of the country’s leading advisors on commercialisation, business modelling, funding solutions and successful techniques for pitch delivery,” said Minister Assisting for Innovation and Industry Kate Lundy.

“For the first time since the competition commenced in 2011, this year’s finalists will also be assisted to gain the skills and knowledge to participate in export markets and participate in a Government-led trade mission to connect with customers in Asia.”

The 2012 competition winner, enLighten Australia, came fourth at the international Clean Technologies Open, held in Silicon Valley, as a result of their LED lighting products, which provided energy savings of up to 93 per cent.

The competition’s principal supporter is the Department of Innovation, Industry, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education, and there is sponsorship from Autodesk, Dairy Australia and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency.

The 2013 finalists are:

Organic Response, which has created a revolutionary lighting control system inspired by nature to deliver maximum energy savings with optimal occupancy comfort.

“A school of fish moves effortlessly and in complete harmony with nature, with individual fish continuously making small decisions in response to the actions of their immediate neighbours and the environment,” says the company site. “Each fish is smart enough to operate independently, yet is part of an elegantly flexible system of Distributed Intelligence that solves complex problems easily without the need for centralised control.”

Distributed Intelligence Organic Response technology allows each individual luminaire to make lighting decisions based on:

  • the presence of occupants sensed directly by its own occupancy sensor
  • occupancy information it receives from neighbouring luminaires
  • ambient light levels sensed directly by its own ambient light sensor
  • algorithms based on the environment in which it operates

It then contributes occupancy information back to the luminaire community, so other luminaires can in turn make more informed lighting decisions.

The end result, the company says, is a flexible, energy efficient lighting system that is simple and cost-effective. And it requires no additional design, hardware, wiring or commissioning to install.

The technology has been employed in Commonwealth Bank’s Darling Park, financial services firm Dixon Advisory’s Melbourne office and the University of Melbourne.

BluGlass Limited, which has created a new LED lighting and solar cell manufacturing technology called Remote Plasma Chemical Vapour Deposition.

The company says there are significant performance and cost advantages to the technology:

  • Low temperature
  • Increased device performance
  • Cost competitive
  • Versatile
  • Scalable
  • More environmentally sustainable and sensitive
  • Can be complementary to current technology

RayGen Resources, which has made a solar technology that combines the most efficient solar cells with the most efficient collector to produce the world’s lowest cost concentrated solar system. The Concentrated Solar Photovoltaic system uses mirrors to concentrate light onto ultra-efficient PV cells originally developed for spacecraft. Solar heat is then combined with a novel compressed air energy storage system to achieve electrical energy storage to be used on demand.

Specialty Coatings, which has created EnerSheetTM, Australia’s only building-integrated PV roofing material. It is a large span, glass reinforced plastic composite roof sheet embedded with high-efficiency solar photovoltaic materials that provide the weatherproof roof of a building as well as generating renewable energy on site. It is specifically designed for commercial buildings.

Microheat Technologies, which has developed an advanced fluid heating technology which provides compact and energy efficient point-of-use instantaneous hot water. It provides energy optimisation and water consumption reduction. It is one of the most efficient ways of heating fluids, with 99.7 per cent efficiency.

Elevare Energy, a power electronics company using its technology to make energy storage with batteries commercially viable reducing greenhouse gases and rising power prices.

Global Future Solutions, a biotechnology company producing environmentally safer products for the oil and gas, poultry, life sciences and sanitation Industries.

Z-Filter, which separates solids from liquids by trapping them inside a single, zippered, filter element.

The winner will be announced at an event on 2 October.

More information available here.