Pacific Solar Pty Limited was formed in 1995 as a cooperative venture between the University of New South Wales and Pacific Power, the state’s electric utility company. The goal was to commercialise a cost-effective technology for conversion of sunlight into electricity using the photovoltaic (PV) effect. The PV technology, now known as Crystalline Silicon on Glass (CSG), was conceived at UNSW by Professors Martin Green and Stuart Wenham with graduate student Dr Zhengrong Shi. Funding for the first five years of Pacific Solar was provided entirely by Pacific Power. The company was established in suburban Sydney, Australia.
In the year 2000, additional funding was provided by Eurosolare SpA, the solar division of Italian company ENI, and in 2003 a final round of funding was provided by the State Government of New South Wales. By this time, Pacific Power’s share of Pacific Solar had been transferred to RBMC, the sucessor entity to Pacific Power. RBMC is a wholly owned subsidiary of the State Government of New South Wales.