Deakin Energy

Deakin Energy marks a new phase in Deakin’s commitment to the energy sector. By taking a University-wide approach to energy research activities, we are delivering innovative solutions for the sustainable energy supply challenges facing society.

Creating energy systems for a sustainable future

Deakin Energy works with industry, communities, government and other leading research providers to find solutions for developing smarter, sustainable energy systems. We seek to build capacity and capability within Deakin that aligns with the needs of our stakeholders.

Global economic and social prosperity is critically dependent on the sustainable sourcing of adequate power linked with innovative and more efficient energy supply, usage and management.

Continued advancement in clean energy generation technologies, enhanced storage capabilities, intelligent and secure management of systems, improvements in energy and efficiency and progressive support policy will all be fundamental to global endeavours to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, combat climate change and address increasing demands for energy.

Our priorities


Accelerating progression in sustainable and intelligent energy systems, as well as effective grid integration and management.


Development of safe, higher performance batteries to support global growth in the adoption of mobile and fixed energy storage systems.

Regulation and markets

The design and advocacy of forecasting, policy and regulation that is directly responsive to emergent technology, climate change governance and ecological and social imperatives.

Materials and design

Innovation in materials, design, practices and technology to promote increased energy efficiency and sustainability.

IT and cyber

Data and energy are inseparable. Developing IT frameworks that deliver new products, while ensuring privacy and security are respected, is essential.

Our team

Dr Adrian Panow, Director

Adrian is responsible for bringing together Deakin researchers in a collaborative network to address industry and government-identified issues – allowing us to respond to opportunities that no single group could.

Adrian has over 20 years’ experience as a senior executive and advisor in the resources, agriculture, manufacturing and renewable energy fields across government, private and research sectors.

Professor Samantha Hepburn, Professor (Property Law), School of Business and Law, Deakin University

Samantha has extensive experience researching and teaching in natural resources law – including mining and energy law – environmental law, and property and land law.  She has written numerous books, including a Mining and Energy Law book for Cambridge University Press as well as many scholarly articles and opinion pieces in her fields of research.

Samantha regularly contributes to public discussion on media forums including Radio National, radio 5AA and The Conversation (where she has published nearly 40 articles), government committees, international workshops, conferences and community forums on the issues relevant to a transitioning energy landscape.

Samantha was a member of the Victorian Auditor General Committee examining unconventional gas development for the Victorian Parliamentary Commission and has presented numerous submissions to the Senate Economic References Committee regarding the Adani coalmine and the National Australia Infrastructure Fund. In 2017, she was a delegate for the Japan-Australia Dialogue on Energy Regulation.

Mr Ian Kett, Director Strategic Partnerships, Deakin University

Ian has been managing major strategic initiatives at Deakin since 2011 and most recently led, in collaboration with industry, the initiation and development of a successful $40m proposal for a large-scale renewable energy microgrid research system on Deakin’s Waurn Ponds campus in collaboration with industry. This built on his previous work in establishing the Deakin Energy research brand and the foundations for an integrated and innovative research platform in this field at Deakin.

Between 2012 and 2014, Ian had oversight of the development of strategic relationships, contracts and the construction process for the $104m Australian Future Fibres Research and Innovation Centre, which included the renovation of the Geelong Future Economy Precinct building, construction of the new fibre processing and Carbon Nexus buildings, relocation of CSIRO from its previous Belmont premises to Deakin Waurn Ponds, and the purchase, installation and commissioning of the pilot scale and research carbon fibre production lines located within Carbon Nexus. Ian also acted as the initial Director of the Carbon Nexus research facility, establishing early commercial contracts with Korean industry. Following this development, he has continued as Deakin/ CSIRO relationship manager to expand the partnership between the organisations.

Ian is a current Board member of the Geelong Manufacturing Council and the Energy Pipelines CRC and has previously been the Executive Director and a full Board member of Kinect Australia (2004 – 2010), Executive Director and Board member of the Victoria Council on Fitness and General Health (VICFIT) (1993-2004) and a senior manager within Government. He has a strong background in health promotion and community development and was a past State Ambassador for the Victorian Government’s ‘Go for your life’ campaign and a member of national health promotion task forces.

Current projects

In December 2017, Deakin and AusNet Services, through its Mondo Power advanced energy solutions group, announced a $30 million project to establish an industrial-scale smart microgrid energy system and integrated research and education platform at Deakin's Waurn Ponds campus.

The project will establish a 7.25-megawatt smart microgrid, including a solar generation farm, a one-megawatt battery storage capacity, multiple small distributed energy resources and an integrated new research and visualisation centre.

Deakin Vice Chancellor Professor Jane den Hollander AO stated at the announcement there was a growing global need for research in innovative renewable energy systems, and the new partnership would help to build Deakin's and AusNet Services' capacities as leaders in the development of innovative energy systems.

Learn More

Work with us

Deakin University has a proud history of successful partnerships with industry, community and government in research and development, as well as building the workforce of the future through tailored education, PhD programs, internships and work programs.

Deakin Energy will continue to expand its strong collaborations with Australian and international organisations and build an energy community to assist in driving new world solutions for the generation and supply of sustainable energy.

By working with us, you will gain access to Deakin’s combined capabilities from across our faculties, research institutes and centres that are leading the way in research, innovation and education.

Contact Us

Dr Adrian Panow
Director, Deakin Energy
T. +61 3 5227 8269