Monash in the RACE for 2030
RACE for 2030 CRC, a record-breaking investment by the Federal Government, is the opportunity for our Monash researchers to work on various energy-driven challenges to help the transition to a more sustainable future.
As humanity, we are facing great challenges – reducing carbon emissions and protecting our biodiversity, and we need to do so with a growing population. How do we create energy transitions that are not only very efficient or net zero but also accessible to everyone?
For Professor Ariel Liebman, Director of the Monash Energy Institute and Program Leader for the RACE for Networks program, there are many exciting projects and collaborations with partners and across Monash to fulfil the RACE vision. "RACE for 2030 will expand Australia’s response options, delivering new clean energy technologies to enable customers to vary their demand to match the variable renewable grid energy supply and network capacity. This approach has the great benefit of reducing customer costs, supporting the integration of large-scale wind and solar farms, as well as reducing pressure on the grid overall”.
Powering a sustainable world
Our researchers are looking forward to finding new solutions to deliver reliable, affordable and clean energy for consumers and businesses. We look forward to transitioning to a sustainable energy future with the RACE for 2030 CRC initiative
Electric Vehicles impact on Grids
Monash University led the multi-university research team tasked with identifying the major research questions to be addressed in relation to the impact of EVs on the grid. Dr Roger Dargaville says that “sales of EVs are projected to rapidly increase, and have the potential to have major beneficial impacts on the distribution network if ‘smart’ charging infrastructure is deployed. With appropriate engineering standards, business models and tariff structures, EVs could facilitate larger rollout of low cost renewable electricity suppliers such as wind and solar farms, and reduce the need for additional storage to be built, saving electricity consumers on their bills. But challenges still exist in areas of understanding how humans will interact with EV charging infrastructure, design of standards for EV charging equipment and data communication, and the impact of EV rollout on urban planning (and vice-versa)”.
Business fleets and electric vehicles: Taxation changes to support home charging
Business fleets need to increase their uptake of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in Australia. Currently BEVs only comprise 1% of vehicles in business fleets. Nationally, transport CO2 emissions are 18% of the total. We address the EV barriers seen by business in transitioning to cleaner energy and a reduction of emissions. The potential of BEV home charging by company and government fleet employees is investigated. Home charging is seen as a step towards dealing with a number of issues preventing the acquisition of BEVs in Australia.
Propose a RACE project
Reliable Affordable Clean Energy for 2030 CRC (RACE) is seeking proposals that address the RACE agenda. We invite RACE partners and Monash University researchers to collaborate and develop proposals that aim to significantly change our clean energy future. Please contact the Monash Energy Institute at email@example.com to discuss your RACE project concept.
Contact our RACE Champions
Monash University has a network of RACE Champions coordinated by the Monash Energy Institute. A big part of our RACE Champions’ job is to align and coordinate Monash researchers’ interests with those of our industry and research partners.
Faculty of Information Technology
Faculty of Business and Economics
Faculty of Engineering
Institutes and initiatives
The need for efficient and reliable integration of renewables in our power network
Renewables like solar and wind power are more affordable than coal and gas, however Dr Reza Razzaghi, Department of Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering, stresses the need to “working with our industry partners to develop new technologies that will enable efficient integration of renewable energy resources in power networks and enhance the reliability and security of power systems".
Solar and wind power are increasingly replacing coal and gas-fuelled energy generation. For Dr Behrooz Bahrani, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, RACE for 2030 CRC offers the opportunity to investigate new energy storage technologies, power conversion and how to integrate variable renewable energy supply into the electric network system.
For Associate Professor Anke Leroux, Department of Economics, RACE for 2030 CRC offers a platform to investigate economic behaviour and resource management under conditions of risk, uncertainty and irreversibility. Anke is interested in consumer behaviour and behavioural change in relation to demand flexibility in homes and businesses and in the role of price as well as non-price incentives.
Business fleets and EV transition: Tax changes to support EV fleets by home charging
Business fleets are a potentially effective pathway for early adoption of electric vehicles (EVs), but business site re-charging infrastructure facility numbers are low. For Dr Diane Kraal, Department of Business Law and Taxation, RACE for 2030 CRC is an exciting opportunity to research and recommend tax change proposals from the Monash Business School. Diane’s new project is set to focus on EVs and taxation law with Dr Anna Mortimore, Griffith University and Dr Diane Kraal, Monash University, the primary researchers. The project considers how taxation changes can facilitate solutions by using fleet employee’s home charging, which can include smart chargers to gain off-peak rates & avoid grid congestion.
Opportunities for Data Science, Machine Learning and AI
For Dr Christoph Bergmeir, Dept. of Data Science and AI, Faculty of Information Technology, the initiative is very ambitious and his team anticipates many interesting and challenging opportunities. "Applications will be around power supply forecasting of renewable energy, demand forecasting, time series applications in network stability simulations, satellite image processing, and many more. These applications will help to address the most challenging problems in the transition of our energy network towards decentralized energy production with renewable energy".
Data visualisation and exploration
As part of the Immersive Analytics research group, Faculty of Information Technology, Dr Sarah Goodwin says that we can use data more effectively to better understand society for a smarter, cleaner and more sustainable future. “Energy affects everyone. As the sector evolves the amount of data is growing substantially. More effective visualisation for data exploration and communication can help us make more sense of that data and ensure it is understandable”.
Energy and Cybersecurity
For Associate Professor Carsten Rudolph, Cybersecurity, Faculty of Information Technology, cybersecurity is relevant to all four programs in RACE for 2030. "It includes resilience on the network level, trusted data for markets, protection of components in homes, as well as cyber-related risks for business models. Monash's contribution will focus on cybersecurity technology as an enabler to build resilient systems. Examples include evolving distributed security mechanisms to minimise central control, establishing secure data provenance and deploying advanced cryptographic algorithms to enable novel system designs".
How can we best involve people, communities and emerging technologies in future energy transitions?
For Professor Sarah Pink of the Faculties of Art Design and Architecture and Faculty of Information Technology, and A/ Prof Yolande Strangers, Faculty of Information Technology, the customer-centred vision of the RACE for 2030 CRC is relevant to all four programs in RACE2030 and matches perfectly with the Emerging Technologies Research Lab’s expertise in socio-technical energy futures. "We specialise in developing non-predictive visions of future energy demand by combining in-depth ethnographic studies of possible human futures with envisioned technological futures. This means our expertise, and the innovative methodologies we have developed are ideally positioned to guide policy and planning in relation to the uncertainty faced by the energy sector".
The governance of energy transitions
Professor Rob Raven, Professor of sustainability transitions and Deputy Director of Research at the Monash Sustainable Development Institute, mentions that "in response to technological innovation and community concerns and commitments to climate change policies, energy systems globally are changing at a rapid pace. The RACE for 2030 CRC will enable Australia to lead and accelerate this transition and ensure a liveable, prosperous and net-zero future for all. Key to this transition is to align technological opportunities with new modes of governance and community engagement".