5B is an Australian solar panel technology company that’s ramping up production of a modular, pre-fabricated solar panel array. The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is contributing $14 million of R&D funding to accelerate the automation of the process which aims to reach utility scale. 

5B has been developing the technology, called Maverick, since 2017. The aim is to produce units that can be manufactured, assembled and even wired in the factory, then literally rolled-out when they get to the field. 

This technology would enable huge solar panel arrays to be constructed in a short amount of time. A process that’s being put to the test as part of the $20 billion Sun Cable project, which aims to export renewable energy from northern Australia to Asia.

“While solar PV and wind are recognised as the lowest cost form of generation in Australia today, further cost reductions are required to optimise Australia’s transition to renewable electricity and to enable emerging industries such as renewable hydrogen and low emissions metals.” Says ARENA CEO Darren Miller.

“5B is an Australian success story at the forefront of solar innovation. Having started in 2013, they are now becoming leaders in locally manufactured ultra low cost solar products that could reshape our solar industry and achieve our important aim of 30 cents per installed watt at utility scale by 2030.”

5B is expanding its production footprint, having completed 52 projects, producing more than 32 MW of capacity across Australia, US, Latin America and India.

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